Our Stories

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In Burkina Faso women help stop the spread of HIV/AIDS

27-year old Assiétou was pregnant with her third child when she discovered that she is HIV positive. “I thought it was the end of the world,” she recalls. “I immediately thought about my husband and I was very worried about his reaction. In the end, I summoned up all my courage and went to talk tomore

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In Benin, women cotton growers embrace organic agriculture

Each year, on average, Benin produces 220,000 tons of cotton, representing 45 percent of its fiscal income and 13 percent of its Gross National Product. Yet, in the northern municipality of Banikoara - Benin’s top cotton-producing region - the excessive use of chemical fertilizers by some cotton gromore

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In Cambodia, solar panels bring light to rural homes

In Cambodia, rural households that are off the national grid must use generators to recharge car batteries to get electricity. But in Kampong Chhnang Province, residents are noticing steady improvement. In Por and Trabek villages, solar panels convert sunlight into electrical energy, which is channemore

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Chinese farmers plant seed for a chemical-free future

By Adam Pitt, third-place winner of UNDP's second annual storytelling contest Seventy-year-old Dang Jiuru dreamed of sending his grandson to university, but until recently his lifelong ambition seemed destined to remain unfulfilled. His apple orchard in Luochuan County, Shaanxi Province, simply did more

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In Egypt, adapted technology improves women's lives

By Marwa Elnokrashy and Karim Ezzeldin, finalists in UNDP's second annual storytelling contest Fatma Ibrahim, a poor mother of six, has been illiterate all her life. As a child, her hardworking parents made simple handicrafts and sold them to make ends meet. Like many girls growing up in Siwa, the lmore

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In El Salvador, paving the road for better opportunities

For decades, poor roads between the municipalities of the Balsam Mountain Range in El Salvador kept the place isolated, slowing economic potential of small villages such as San Antonio. Despite having an agricultural cooperative of over 700 manzanas (about 1200 acres), 40 percent of which are dedicamore

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In El Salvador, women leading the way in HIV/AIDS prevention

Talking about sexuality in El Salvador is taboo, especially in rural areas, where access to information and education is limited. Angélica Méndez, 33 years old, a resident of El Flor canton in Metapán in the north of the country, describes the situation with an example:  “A lady comes and says more

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Ethiopian families use cultural crafts to improve livelihoods

Genet Tesfaye is a young, married mother of one living in Ethiopia’s capital city of Addis Ababa. A potter by trade, Genet has been contributing more and more to her family’s income through her craft. Ethiopia has a diverse and rich cultural heritage, and a joint UNDP-UNESCO project is taking advantmore

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In FYR Macedonia, supporting entrepreneurs to build new lives

As soon as she completed her dentistry studies, Arta Alija applied for as many jobs as she could at state clinics. But the 30-year-old from Tetovo, Macedonia, had no luck. Although the number of people enrolling in undergraduate and graduate programs has risen in recent years, the percentage of unemmore

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In Kyrgyzstan, farmers
organize to overcome poverty

In summers past, all farmers in Kyrgyzstan’s Suusamyr Valley would take their livestock to pasture, leaving their villages virtually unattended. As a consequence, critical jobs such as taking produce to market and preparing for winter were neglected. This changed when local inhabitants were encouragmore

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