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Two outstanding African Development Bank (AfDB) initiatives, based in Uganda and Côte d’Ivoire, received Development Impact Honors on Thursday, July 25 from the US Treasury Department in an awards ceremony in Washington, DC. The AfDB is the first multilateral development bank (MDB) to receive recognition for two projects in the same year.
This year’s selected projects included the AfDB’s Emerging from Conflict/Multisector Support Project in Côte d’Ivoire, which focuses on restoring social services and reducing gender-based violence in post-conflict Côte d’Ivoire, and the Community Agricultural Infrastructure Improvement Programme in rural Uganda.
The US Treasury Department’s Development Impact Honors awards promote the highest standards in development by recognizing outstanding projects undertaken by multilateral development banks. The program seeks to reward excellence in project design and implementation and to showcase the vital work MDBs carry out in communities, countries and regions to support the world’s poorest people. The two AfDB projects were selected from dozens of MDB projects nominated for the award.
African Development Bank President Donald Kaberuka was on hand to accept the awards personally from Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew.
In 2012, the AfDB’s Mali-Senegal Road Project received Development Impact Honors, alongside initiatives financed by the Asian Development Bank, Inter-American Development Bank and World Bank Group-Global Environment Facility.
About the projects
Following the political crisis and civil unrest in the early 2000s in Côte d’Ivoire, this project was designed to promote economic recovery, help restore public social services and, in particular, address the problem of gender-based violence (GBV). An integrated system offered survivors health and psychological treatment and judicial assistance, assisted their social and economic reintegration into the community, and ran an awareness-raising campaign on GBV. As a result of the project, hospitals and health centres were equipped, health workers and other community leaders were trained, awareness of GBV was raised in over 1.5 million people, and GBV survivors and other women were trained in a range of job skills and access to microfinance was provided to them.
This project took a community-based approach to providing agricultural infrastructure and raising the incomes of farmers. Residents of local communities participated in taking inventory, setting priorities, and selecting labour-intensive projects to build or improve agricultural infrastructure and maintain it after completion. The project rehabilitated rural roads, constructed markets, and installed agro-processing equipment. As a result, farmgate prices of staples have increased, the costs and time involved in transportation to major towns have decreased, school enrollment has risen, and, as people have gained better access to health centres, health has improved.