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Tracking the First- and Second-Order Impacts of COVID-19

In March 2021, the USAID Bureau for Policy, Planning, and Learning (USAID/PPL) COVID Analytics Team prepared "Tracking the First- and Second-Order Impacts of COVID-19," a concise landscape analysis examining the pandemic's impacts across USAID sectors and regions after one year.  The analysis explores six broad areas -- the health crisis, macroeconomic and mobility shocks, household-level impacts, shifts in democratic governance and civic engagement, national security, and climate change -- and leverages the best available data from USAID and external institutions to unders

Leveraging Reconstruction: Opportunities for Creating Good Jobs

Given the increasing incidence of disasters around the world, the recovery process must be leveraged for longer-term development gains. Two years after an earthquake displaced nearly 2.8 million people and shocked Nepal’s economy, the country still has a long way to go in its reconstruction process. At the same time, the country faces an endless loop of out-migration for low-paying and often exploitative work, with little meaningful development in communities of origin.

Extending Credit to Rural Farmers: Jashim’s Story

Jashim Uddin has been a beneficiary of USAID’s Rice Value Chains (RVC) project, which was led by IRRI Bangladesh, since 2015. He started full-time farming to support his family after completing his Master’s degree. This story shares his experience using mobile financial services, in particular a micro-credit product for farmers that he received through IFIC Bank. This is the twelfth in a series created by mSTAR/Bangladesh to show the tangible benefits of digital financial services on people's lives.

Building the Skills of Youth to Engage in Employment, Entrepreneurship, and Education

Over the next decade, roughly one billion youth will enter the workforce. Young people, especially young women, who know how to find academic or vocational programs to expand their knowledge and skills, understand how to look for a job, are able to adapt to workplace dynamics, and are entrepreneurial will have the best chances of attaining sustainable livelihoods that enable them to avoid risky behaviors associated with HIV.

Skills-based, Participatory Training for HIV Risk Reduction Among Youth

To adopt healthy sexual behavior, young people need to have accurate information (key facts), opportunities to consider how this information applies to their lives (values and attitudes) and to feel good enough about themselves to think that they are worth looking after (self-esteem). They also need the skills to act on their new understanding, in a way that is consistent with their knowledge and values.

Increased Income Earning Opportunities: Bala’s Story

Kuber Chandra Bala is a fish farmer who had previously participated in trainings offered by USAID's Aquaculture for Income and Nutrition (AIN) project. In 2014, AIN began paying training incentives to farmers like Bala via mobile money. Bala soon started using his MFS account to make purchases and top up his mobile airtime, saving him time and money. With the time saved, he was able to engage in other income-earning opportunities. This is the tenth in a series created by mSTAR/Bangladesh to show the tangible benefits of digital financial services on people's lives.

Digital Financial Service Product Innovation #2 - IFIC Mobile Banking

The Feed the Future Bangladesh Rice Value Chain (RVC) project funded by USAID and implemented by the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), Bangladesh, is partnering with IFIC Bank Limited with support from mSTAR/Bangladesh to pilot a new agri-credit facility for farmers in Jessore and Satkhira districts. This learning document provides more details about this exciting DFS product innovation, including its benefits and the roles of those involved.

Digital Financial Service Product Innovation #1 - Bank Asia

USAID’s Agricultural Extension Support Activity (AESA), implemented by Dhaka Ahsania Mission (DAM) in partnership with CARE Bangladesh and mPower is piloting a new initiative entitled ‘Smallholders’ Access to Microfinance through Bank: A-card’ to provide smallholder farmers with agricultural lending. AESA is partnering with Bank Asia Limited and local microfinance institutions Society Development Committee (SDC), Grameen Jano Unnayan Sangstha (GJUS) and DAM Foundation for Economic Development (DFED) to test a micro-credit facility for farmers in Faridpur, Bhola, and Barguna districts.

Mali is Poised to be a Leader for DFS in West Africa

“Financial inclusion means economic empowerment, particularly for women, rural communities, and the poor. Financial services offered through electronic means, like mobile phones, are key contributors to that vision.” Paul Folmsbee, U.S. Ambassador to Mali, shared this in Bamako this past October. He was speaking before a workshop of 144 people on digital financial services (DFS) organized by USAID.