PRIME And Afar MFI Sign an Agreement to Increase Access to Thousands of Households

Following USAID’s approval, PRIME under IR3, has signed a sub-award agreement with Afar Micro Finance Institute (MFI) to provide a cost sharing grant that is aimed at improving the core financial service of the MFI. The financial support will be used for activities such as opening four new branches in PRIME operational areas, linking branches with core banking solutions, and building the capacity of the management and board of directors of the MFI.By signing this substantial sub-award agreement, PRIME increases access to inclusive financial services in Afar region for businesses and thousands of households. Afar MFI is the first MFI in the region which is supported by PRIME for its establishment under the fund obtained from USAID Islamic financial service cost extension grant.

Please click the link to download the news, PRIME and Afar MFI sign an agreement to increase access to thousands of households

Monthly Livestock Price Report Bulletin April 2015

The livestock market bulletin report for the month of April, 2015, a publication of selected information obtained from the NLMIS. This publication contains limited amount of information and further detail on pricing, number of traded animals (small ruminants, cattle, camel) categorized in various breeds and body condition in different markets throughout Ethiopia on weekly, biweekly, monthly, quarterly and yearly basis can be found on www.lmiset.net

Please Click the link below to download the Report Bulletin April 2015, Monthly Livestock Price Report Bulletin_April_2015

U.S. Leadership and Global Food Security Featuring Senator Casey

In a recent global food security event that Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) organized, Senator Robert P. Casey. Jr. (D-PA), the keynote address speaker, made a reference to PRIME to stress how US assistance is delivering results in terms of building resilience among hard to reach and vulnerable communities and making transitions away from the need for emergency food assistance. 

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Over the last decade, global food security has emerged as a critical U.S. strategic priority.  Through programs such as Feed the Future and partnerships with the New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition, among others, the U.S. has worked to increase global agriculture production and improve nutrition outcomes for children and families worldwide.

CSIS is honored to invite you to join us for a keynote address and discussion with Senator Robert P. Casey. Jr. (D-PA) on the importance of global food security efforts to broader U.S. foreign policy and national security goals.  This event will be moderated by Kimberly Flowers, the new director of the CSIS Global Food Security Project.

Keynote Address by:

The Honorable Robert P. Casey, Jr. (D-PA)

Ranking Member, Senate Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry
Subcommittee on Nutrition, Specialty Crops, and Agricultural Research

Moderated by:

Ms. Kimberly Flowers
Director, CSIS Global Food Security Project

Introduction by:

Mr. Daniel F. Runde
William A. Schreyer Chair and Director, Project on Prosperity and Development

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Nutrition with a Flair for the Dramatic in Ethiopia

You probably don’t tune in to Days of Our Lives for health advice, but a Feed the Future project in Ethiopia is taking an out-of-the-box approach to improving nutrition through a new radio soap opera campaign that is capturing the attention of traditional pastoral families.

More than 83 percent of Ethiopia’s population lives in rural areas, many as pastoralists, who depend almost exclusively on the land and their livestock for food and livelihoods. For these communities, securing enough of the right foods every day is a struggle; inadequate livestock care, poor maternal health and insufficient child nutrition compound the challenges they face.

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Last month, in partnership with entertainment powerhouse Warner Brothers, a U.S. Agency for International Development project implemented by Mercy Corps as part of the Feed the Future initiative launched an original soap opera program – broadcast via radio – that uses drama, love and conflict to educate pastoral communities and encourage behavior changes that can improve their long-term food security, health and well-being.

“This initiative taps into the strong Ethiopian tradition of oral storytelling and harnesses the power of stories to entertain and educate,” says Dominic Graham, Ethiopia country director for Mercy Corps. “Our goal is to help people facing repeated drought, hunger and poverty improve their long-term health through better decision making.”

The soap opera campaign is supported by the creative expertise of four Warner Brothers volunteers who worked closely with Mercy Corps staff on character development, compelling storylines and promotional strategies. They shared best practices for writing and marketing with Ethiopian staff to help ensure the program’s longevity, and spent time in Ethiopia in order to shape stories that would be both interesting and authentic.

The result is a radio drama that is on air with dialect and characters tailored to three regions where Feed the Future is working, Afar, Oromia and Somali. The weekly broadcast engages listeners with stories that stress the importance of diversifying diets (particularly among mothers and their young children), increasing awareness of the critical 1,000 days between pregnancy and a child’s second birthday, equitable decision-making for improved household nutrition, and other behaviors. Details unique to each region, such as names and common greetings, help make the stories feel familiar and relatable for local audiences.

Early feedback on the 20-episode first season indicates the program is helping generate community and family discussions about marriage, career, natural resources, nutrition and other critical topics. As part of this dialogue, the Feed the Future project has also established listener groups that coordinate direct and facilitated listening of the soap opera and assist with effective monitoring and evaluation. The group will use an innovative qualitative data capturing tool called Sensemaker to evaluate whether and how these discussions will lead to better decision making and impact nutritional status.

USAID’s Pastoralist Areas Improvement through Market Expansion (PRIME) activity is a five-year, $57 million effort under the Feed the Future initiative designed to increase household incomes and enhance resilience to climate change through market linkages in Ethiopia’s dryland areas. PRIME is helping improve the nutritional status of women and children, mainly through improving productivity of livestock and livestock products.

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Celebration of International Day of Persons with Disabilities

“Pastoralist Areas Resilience Improvement through Market Development Project observed the International Day of Persons with Disabilities at Mercy Corps Ethiopia Office Addis Ababa. The Ethiopian Center for Disability and Development (ECDD) project coordinator at PRIME, Tesfu Equbeyohaness, delivered an awareness-raising briefing to PRIME staff. During the occasion, Ato Tesfu said, “PRIME is making a huge contribution towards the inclusion and creation of access to persons with disability in its operational areas”. He further reminded all staff and leadership to even strengthen the deliberate inclusion efforts further.