Our Stories

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'People, planet, profit' jumpstarts progress in Tajikistan

In the Gonchi district of Tajikistan, Sharipova Nasiba has become her family’s main breadwinner. After Nasiba’s husband became too ill to work, the mother of two joined a women’s self-help group to begin a small business growing crops in a greenhouse. She and two other women received training in how more

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Afghanistan: New environmental councils spur development in provincial communities

Standing at the edge of Joe-e-Projey canal in the northern town of Char-i-Kar, Mohammad Tahir, a car mechanic, rues the fate of children who drink water from the local canal. “This canal has snuffed out many, many young lives. It is a bed of dirt and disease,” he says sadly, with moist eyes. The 70- more

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Agriculture opens new doors for young Jamaicans

Kingston – Some 650 young and jobless women and men in four impoverished areas of Jamaica have received training in cultivation and food production skills to boost their job opportunities in local farming and agro-industries. Through a three-year programme started in January 2010 by the Government a more

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Bangladesh: Transforming life in the slums

Shabdi D’Costa was in her forties, barely surviving with her three daughters on her husband’s Tk 1,800 (US $22) salary, when she decided to find a way out of poverty by taking charge of the family finances. “We barely had enough money to feed and clothe ourselves,” said Shabdi. “I needed to learn to more

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Bangladeshi micro-credit model helps empower Zambian women

Just two years ago, Elizabeth Sakala-Banda, a mother of seven in Zambia’s eastern Petauke district, was unemployed and had no way of knowing that an Asian micro-credit scheme could turn her life around, and help put her children through school.  During 2010, Elizabeth and some 829 other women j more

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Benin: New opportunities for young graduates

Faced with the difficulty of finding new employment in Cotonou, Benin’s largest city, Philippe and Ulrich, two brothers from a poor background decided to launch their own fruit juice distribution business after finishing their university studies. Nowadays, both brothers command a salary, and recruit more

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Biodiversity projects improve lives in China

Yu Zerun, a farmer from Daping village in the Sichuan province, Western China, used to harvest rare medicinal plants in protected areas of the Upper Yangtze River Basin, an area internationally recognized for its biodiversity value. The caterpillar fungus Yu Zerun traded at the local market provided more

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Bosnia and Herzegovina: A step to end stigma over HIV

Bosnia and Herzegovina passed a milestone in its effort to end HIV-related stigma and discrimination when a baby was born via C-section in January to HIV-positive parents in Sarajevo. “We all know how much blood there can be when a caesarean section is performed, but there was no hesitation or discr more

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Bosnia, piloting the way to energy efficiency

In the winter, the kindergarten in Bosnia and Herzegovina’s municipality of Gradiska was often freezing cold, with temperatures inside dipping to 7° Celsius. Swaddled in layers of heavy clothes, the kindergarteners could barely move. Teachers would rub their frozen fingers and stamp their feet to ke more

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Eco-stoves empower indigenous women in Brazil

By Daniel De Castro and Jacob Said, winners of UNDP's second annual storytelling contest The sun was still rising and Delma Gonçalves, 41, had already spent two hours trekking to the place where she and the rest of her settlement collected firewood. The return trip was even worse: under the hot sun, more

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