The USAID-funded Community Development Activity Fund (CDAF) finances small development activities to respond to immediate needs of poor Bolivians in ways that build local problem-solving capacities. It also aims to promote better understanding of the United States through USAID-funded people-oriented development assistance.
In coordination with USAID, ACDI/VOCA launched the $1.5 million CDAF program in September 2009 through a series of activities designed to empower communities to achieve their priority social and economic development objectives. The program emphasizes traditionally excluded segments of the population, including women, indigenous groups, people with disabilities and others.
Projects Benefit Vulnerable Citizens
CDAF works with communities on a wide variety of projects, such as procuring computers and desks for schools, constructing classrooms or sanitary bathroom facilities, and providing healthcare equipment and facilities. The following are a few examples of how it has helped communities meet their needs:
- The municipality of Potosí decided to rehabilitate a cafeteria for senior citizens. CDAF funds covered the construction of a new kitchen; installation of ceramic flooring; improved storage facilities; a new entrance with stairs and railings; new doors and windows; and a complete paint job. The municipality contributed to food preparation, serving equipment and recreation equipment. Over 60 senior citizens now receive nutritious meals at the cafeteria Monday through Friday. During the inauguration, a beneficiary said, “Now I will come to the cafeteria. It only costs 4 bolivianos ($0.57)—it is very cheap! And I feel very happy, because I can come and visit with friends.”
- The community of El Palomar, in the municipality of Chaqui, has a widely dispersed rural population, but only one dilapidated school for 463 students and 36 teachers. The building’s structure was weak and some classrooms had badly damaged floors and leaking walls. The CDAF program worked with the community and local government to upgrade and expand the school facilities. The municipality and the community provided labor to construct two classrooms and a storeroom. The community’s teachers and children are now enjoying the use of the clean and safe facilities.
- CDAF provided t-shirts, trophies and medals for the XII National Bolivian Special Olympics. In 2010, 435 athletes and over 400 volunteers participated in the event, the goal of which is to promote social inclusion of people with disabilities through sports. Mónica Rivero, president of the Special Olympics, said of the event in Bolivia, “This activity is important for the whole community. When [the Special Olympics athletes] demonstrate their ability to triumph, it is an example for all people.”
By 2014 the $1.5 million project will implement more than 110 small-grant projects throughout Bolivia.
For more information, contact Elizabeth Weber at email@example.com.
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