By Lovejoy Mutongwiza
The United States government yesterday donated $370,900 in small grants to 17 community-based organizations from nine provinces through its small grants program.
Funding sources include the Africa Regional Democracy Fund (ARDF), U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) small grants fund, the Julia Taft Refugee Fund, and the Ambassador’s Special Self Help (SSH) Fund.
Officiating at the handover ceremony, US Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Brian A. Nichols said the community grants program focuses on providing targeted grants to assist small-scale, short-term, community-driven development projects that bring about tangible and immediate improvements in people’s lives.
“These small grants also recognize that your organizations and communities are already working hard to help yourselves. The self-help grants help advance projects that, through the ownership and dedication of the community, tangibly improve the lives of the community and encourage future development,” he said.
The U.S. Embassy small grants focus on supporting small-scale, short-term, community projects that bring about improvements in people’s lives.
The one-time grants help local organizations and communities start up or continue sustainable projects designed to improve economic or social conditions.
PEPFAR small grants assist communities to improve their living standards and provide care and support to orphans, vulnerable children, and their households. The Julia Taft Refugee Fund assists refugee populations.
The ARDF is providing $200,000 to the Legal Resources Foundation to strengthen citizen and elected official engagement to improve accountability, broaden access to justice, and address human rights issues in Zimbabwe.
Since 1980, at Zimbabwe’s independence, the Embassy has supported community development projects that improve basic economic or social conditions at the village level all across the country.
The U.S. Embassy has awarded more than $2 million for community-driven projects over the past ten years.