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Organic farming breaks new ground in Zimbabwe

The Makoni Organic Farmers Association, developed to transition away from tobacco cultivation and chemical-intensive agriculture, is leading the way in environmental conservation and sustainable use of resources.  “In organic agriculture, we do not need to buy fertilizers or struggle to raise mmore

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Healing and hope for victims of sexual violence

Like many other survivors of sexual and gender-based violence during Croatia's violent conflict between 1991 and 1995, Ana has been struggling to deal with her traumatic experience for more than 20 years. "I used to feel so powerless," says the unemployed widow, now in her mid-fifties. In more

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Helping communities boost food security in Eritrea

With only a handful of children playing around in an open field, the village of Lamza, on the outskirts of the capital city of Eritrea, looks deserted. This is because almost all the village residents have gone to work on their farms in a nearby valley, where two micro dams are allowing them to irrimore

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Panama: Islanders integrate biodiversity conservation

Residents of the Pearl Islands and other archipelagoes in the Gulf of Panama always got everything from the sea. But, according to the islanders, fish population has been steadily declining, and so have jobs. Andrés Ramirez, a boat captain who services commuters between the islands, faces a diminismore

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Lebanon: Reviving markets and stimulating the local economy

“We used to sit on rocks and walk in mud during winter season. But now the road is paved, so the market is accessible and clean.” For Amira Bou Zeid, a Lebanese citizen from the country’s Bekaa Valley region, the renovation of her local market through a UNDP project funded by the United Nations Highmore

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Sri Lanka: Women look to the future with optimism

Like many others of her village in northern Sri Lanka, Jecindan Dharsha was displaced several times during nearly three decades of conflict in the country and faced severe hardships. When she came back to her village she didn’t have a penny to her name. “I had to start my life all over again,” Dharsmore

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In Turkey, fashion creates jobs

For Fatma, divorced at the age of 19 and living at her parents’ house with two kids, life used to be difficult. “I loved my husband but it did not work,” said Fatma, who lives in Turkey. “He cheated on me. I had no profession and no job. I did not know what to do.” But Fatma’s life changed after shemore

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In Albania, new horizons open for domestic violence survivors

Rina spent the last three months of her last pregnancy at a shelter for survivors of domestic violence in Tirana. She and two of her younger children, aged 2 and 5, had fled their abusive home in Burrel, in the mountains of northern Albania. Rina's eyes fill with tears when she speaks of the eldest more

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A tour boat sets sail in Gaza, launching a better life

When he graduated recently with a degree in architecture, Raed El-Shorafa, 27, faced the risk of joining increasing numbers of the unemployed in Gaza. Despite his good academic performance, job opportunities were rare.  “I had no income,” Raed said. “I was a burden on my family.”  With an more

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Marshall Islands: Protecting drinking water from drought and sea level rise

By the time the Government declared a state of emergency in 2013, the wells had long run dry in the drought-stricken northern reaches of the Marshall Islands, and families had started fleeing to the capital Majuro. This idyllic paradise is set so low in the ocean that there are few freshwater reservmore

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In Ghana, a victory for energy efficiency

“I don’t have anything against old things, but when it comes to refrigerators, I can find a million reasons why new is better than old,” says George Effah Baffoe, a retired engineer and father of five as he turns in his old refrigerator for a new, energy-efficient one. Together, the 2 million fridgmore

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Somali youth feel hopeful, despite challenges

Ali became an orphan a few years ago when his parents died in explosion.  As the eldest of three children, Ali, 21, set off in search of work and landed a job at a security checkpoint in order to earn enough money to feed himself and his two younger siblings.  While wielding a gun, his daimore

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Classrooms promote peace in Sudan

In Mazmoom in Sennar State, things are tense. The normally quiet village in the south-east corner of Sudan has been the scene of conflict in 2012. More than 3,800 returnee Sudanese, including some 1,800 ex-fighters, are trying to establish new homes and farms in the small community.  Many of thmore

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China: Building back better and greener

Before the devastating Wenchuan earthquake in southwestern China on 12 May 2008, 62-year-old Qing Liehua’s main source of income and food for his family was chicken farming. After the earthquake destroyed his home in Qinghe Village, Sichuan Province, however, he lost everything, including his chickemore

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Removing physical barriers to Cyprus reunification

Antigoni Kallouri and Necmi Maraşuna were among those Cypriot farmers, on both sides of the island, who for many years could not access their lands. The presence of landmines in the buffer zone between the northern and southern part of Cyprus made cultivating local farmlands too dangerous. “A few yemore

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Haitian women rebuild their lives one brick at a time

The main driving force for earthquake-damaged house rebuilding in Haiti is not the government, the private sector, NGOs or international organizations. Families and communities have been playing a vital role, taking the task to build back a more resilient country into their own hands—especially womemore

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Haitians on the pitch for recovery

Josiane Vesna is a resident of Bel Air, one of the most violent, poor, and garbage-filled zones in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Following the earthquake that devastated the country one year ago, Josiane, along with nearly 1000 other Haitians, was hired to rebuild six neighbourhoods, including her own. “Afmore

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Voting, not Violence, in Kenya

Days before a constitutional referendum took place in Kenya, employees at the Uwiano Platform in the capital of Nairobi received an alarming SMS.  The message came from a resident of Chebarus village who said his familiy had been surrounded by an unknown armed group. The assailants had threatenmore

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Bringing economic security to women in Nepal

Dipmala Mahato is beginning to feel the benefits that financial prosperity can bring. While she still lives in a one-room home, constructed of mud and roughly the size of a table-tennis board, she now earns a decent income selling her vegetables in the twice-weekly local market. Mahato is one of 32 more

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Supporting recovery and local governance in Somalia

It is early morning and Amina[1] has another busy day ahead. The mother of two must get her children off to school and finish some housekeeping before she can attend to her small business, selling second-hand clothes and household supplies beside her corrugated-iron-roofed house. In spite of her hecmore