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To Eradicate Extreme Poverty


An internally displaced woman holds her malnourished son at a new settlement in Somalia's capital Mogadishu.

“By working together to meet these and other targets over time."

In his State of the Union address in February, President Barack Obama set a new goal for United States development policy—eradicating extreme poverty within one generation:


“The United States will join with our allies to eradicate such extreme poverty in the next two decades by connecting more people to the global economy; by empowering women; by giving our young and brightest minds new opportunities to serve, and helping communities to feed, and power, and educate themselves; by saving the world’s children from preventable deaths; and by realizing the promise of an AIDS-free generation, which is within our reach.”

“It was an extraordinary moment, as the President set forth a vision for one of the greatest contributions to human progress in history. But the goal is within our reach,” said Rajiv Shah, Administrator of the country’s chief development organization, the United States Agency for International Development, or USAID.

That’s because for the first time in history, we have the tools, technologies, and avenues to end within less than one generation, extreme poverty, and the two scourges that come with it-- widespread hunger and preventable death, especially child death.

The United States is already moving in the right direction--through the Obama Administration’s signature program, the Feed the Future initiative, the United States is bringing together donors, researchers, agricultural innovators, private sector companies and developing countries, to break the cycle of hunger and poverty, produce more energy and educate more children.

Investments in science, technology and innovation have historically led to humankind’s greatest advances, and USAID is taking full advantage of science to advance development.

Cooperation and partnership are key to this huge endeavor. Working with our partners, we can accelerate economic growth and enable people to connect to the global economy; work with fragile states where extreme poverty is most likely to thrive; orient existing development to prioritize poverty eradication; and inject new perspectives into development.

“We cannot address these challenges alone, but we can mobilize movements,” said USAID Administrator Shah.

“By working together to meet these and other targets over time, we can realize a world where every farmer has seeds; every child gets healthy food, basic medications, and a good education; and everyone has a say in their future.”
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