The Hunger Project's Executive VP, John Coonrod, is in Washington, DC to strengthen THP's seat at the table of international development. Each week, John sends us insight into issues of health, policy, human rights and more by way of the Washington Weekly.
USAID Reports on Reform Progress, Cites India
In a symbol of its bipartisan support, USAID administrator Raj Shah released the Progress Report on “USAID Forward” - the agency’s massive reform effort at an event co-hosted by the American Enterprise Institute and Center for American Progress.
Key messages in the launch were transparency and accountability: USAID for the first time has published 186 evaluations and are working from a unified results framework of 57 indicators. I raised the question, which was featured in USAID’s report of the meeting of compliance with the Paris Principle of donor coordination. Shah responded with the example of the Global Movement to End Preventable Child Deaths catalyzed by USAID but led by India and Ethiopia. On February 7, India launched the initiative with representatives from all its states.
Celebrating World Water Day in Washington and Mexico
In another show of bipartisan support, our WASH (Water/Sanitation/Hygiene) working group that is backing “Water for the World” legislation, hosted an advocacy day and reception on Capitol Hill. The two co-sponsors of the bill, Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) and Ted Poe (R-TX), spoke, and numerous water-focused organizations had display tables.
IFPRI Hosts 1,000 Days
Last week I was invited to be a panelist during the global meeting of CGIAR’s Agriculture For Nutrition and Health Initiative organized by the 1,000 Days Partnership. I was asked to speak about the role of policy, and I spoke about the importance of women’s leadership in local governance as a way to address the current shortcomings of top-down initiatives.
World Tuberculosis Day: Global Health and Diplomacy
March 24 was World TB Day. TB is now the world’s second largest killer, right behind AIDS, and is the biggest killer in South Asia. The scary part is large number of cases of multi-drug-resistant TB. I attended a meeting hosted by the Center for Global Health and Diplomacy which mobilizes the power of political leaders behind leading threats.
This is clearly an area where additional research is needed. There is a major effort underway to develop a new vaccine for TB – the only one currently in existence was developed 85 years ago, and does not protect against drug-resistant strains. Researchers at the meeting predict it will take another 10 years to develop the vaccine.
An interesting fact from our perspective is that speakers emphasized the need for holistic women-centered strategies for the detection and treatment. For example, its very hard to detect TB in children, but if you find it in the mother chances are you’ll find it in the child.
Local First: An Ally in Our Approach
Several weeks ago, I was directed to contact Carolyn Haymon OBE in the UK, head of PeaceDirect that works on peace building in horrendous post-conflict situations. Why? Because both THP and PeaceDirect have recognized is that the greatest and most ignored and undermined resource for both ending hunger and conflicts is the people themselves. She has launched a global movement to push this approach called Local First.
March 25-26: CAADP Partnership Platform, Addis
April 11 – THP/UNDEF Participatory Local Democracy Consultation in Rome
April 23/24 – THP/UNDEF Participatory Local Democracy Consultation in Cape Town
April 29-May 1 – InterAction Forum, Arlington, Virginia
May 12-14 – Food Security and Nutrition Knowledge Sharing, Dhaka
May 20-28 – World Health Assembly, Geneva
May 28 – World Hunger Day, London
May 28-30 – Women Deliver Conference, Kuala Lumpur – Joly to attend
June 8 – London Hunger Summit before the G8.
June 10-11 – Scaling-up Nutrition/1000 Day Summit in Washington
June 27-28 – International Conference on Population and Development, Paris
September 5-6 – Leaders G20 Summit in St. Petersburg, Russia
September 24-29 – Opening of the UN General Assembly
October 2 – Mahatma Gandhi’s birthday and the awarding of the Sarojini Naidu Prize.
October 5 – The Hunger Project Fall Event
October 11 – International Girl Child Day (which will subsume our National Girl Child Day.)
October 16 – World Food Day