Skip to comments.U.S. Agency Continues Iraqi Development with Community Programs
Posted on 02/07/2009 9:27:41 AM PST by SandRat
CAMP VICTORY Although Iraq has taken huge steps toward becoming a safe and democratic nation, there is still more to be done. To that end, The United States Agency for International Development is continuing its mission to bring peace and stability to Iraq through various community programs.
USAID has been in Iraq since 2003 and has spent over 6.1 billion dollars through various programs designed to promote peace and stability, said Maj. Gita Velu, liaison officer to USAID.
USAID is a branch of the State Department based in Washington D.C. with offices in developing countries all over the world.
According to USAID, their mission of in Iraq is to provide a focused approach to essential issues, address the root causes of instability, and build the foundation for a prosperous Iraq.
Their strategy calls for an expanded role in supporting focused stabilization, establishing the foundation for economic growth, and building national capacity. These efforts, in the short-term, help stabilize areas impacted by the insurgency and mitigate the appeal of insurgent recruitment efforts.
Over the longer term, the establishment of democratic institutions and sustainable economic development will form the foundations of a stable, democratic, and prosperous Iraq.
To accomplish this mission, USAID has programs designed to address specific issues, including agriculture, economics, government, health, education and government capacity building.
According to Velu, USAID has been focusing its resources here on three programs: Agriculture, Democracy and Governance, and Community Stabilization. The agency has spent nearly one billion dollars between the three.
The democracy and governance program encourages integration of democratic principals into all levels of Iraqi government, said Renuka Naj, USAID / Iraq Mission, Development and Outreach communications officer. This supports the militarys goal of bringing political stability to Iraq.
The objective of the agriculture program is to revitalize agricultural production, stimulate income and rehabilitate the country's natural resource base, said Velu.