Timeline of the United States Agency for International Development
This is a timeline of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), a United States government-run international development agency which describes itself as the world's premier development agency.
|Time period||Development summary|
|1960s||USAID is Born. Once it gets to work, international development assistance opportunities grow tremendously. The time during the Kennedy and Johnson administrations become known as the “decade of development.”|
|1970s||USAID begins to shift its focus away from technical and capital assistance programs, focusing on "basic human needs" such as food and nutrition, population planning, health, education, and human resources development.|
|1980s||Foreign assistance seeks to stabilize currencies and financial systems. In the 1980s, USAID reaffirms its commitment to broad-based economic growth, emphasizing employment and income opportunities through a revitalization of agriculture and expansion of domestic markets. Development activities become increasingly channeled through private voluntary organizations (PVOs), and aid shifts from individual projects to large programs. In the mid-1980s, USAID fully commits itself to a significant effort to improve global childhood immunization coverage.|
|1990s||USAID’s top priority becomes sustainable development, or helping countries improve their own quality of life. During this decade, USAID tailors development assistance programs to the countries' economic conditions. During the 1990s, USAID engages in a process of structural reform. Programming and funding authority are being shifted dramatically within the Agency to further decentralize responsibilities. The centralized strategic decision making that characterized the Agency in the first part of the decade is being shifted to missions and the role of Global projects changes dramatically.|
|2000s||War and rebuilding becomes a top concern. With the Afghanistan and Iraq wars at the height of activity, USAID is called on to help those two countries rebuild government, infrastructure, civil society and basic services such as health care and education. The agency also begins an aggressive campaign to reach out to new partner organizations – including the private sector and foundations – to extend the reach of foreign assistance.|
|2010s||Today, USAID staff works in more than 100 countries around the world.|
|Year||Event type||Details||Location/involved countries|
|1961||United States President John F. Kennedy signs the Foreign Assistance Act into law and creates USAID by executive order.||United States|
|1966||Program||USAID joins the global effort to eradicate smallpox.|
|1970||Funding||USAID allocates some funding to four U.S. universities to study legislatures in developing countries.|
|1970||Program||USAID commences the 10-year Maasai Range Development and Management Project. Range development specialists are brought in from the USA, and US$1.7 million are loaned to the Tanzanian government for capital equipment. The production target is a 100% increase over 10 years. The project entails constructing cattle dips to ght disease and watering points to prevent overgrazing, improving herds, increasing marketing facilities and training select Tanzanians in conservation and range management.||Tanzania|
|1971||Program||USAID develops a "positive list" of commodities, including pesticides that are eligible for agency financing.|
|1971||Collaboration||USAID participates in the establishment of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR), a partnership of international research centers.|
|1972||Assistance||USAID begins family-planning assistance in Kenya.||Kenya|
|1972 – 1976||Funding||USAID finances approximately 9,000 tons of pesticides in the period.|
|1974||Program||USAID’s partnership with Cyprus begins as a humanitarian relief operation.||Cyprus|
|1975||Program||USAID establishes the Development Experience Clearinghouse (DEC) in order to strengthen development activities by making development experience documents available to a wide variety of audiences.|
|1975||Assistance||USAID begins working in the health sector in Egypt.||Egypt|
|1976||Program||USAID initiates its first agricultural research project which concentrates on supporting the Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute (BARI) at Joydebpur, developing the Ishurdi Centre for work on wheat, and providing funds for technical assistance, training and contract research.||Bangladesh|
|1976||Program||USAID funds the Portage Project to set up non-formal early education programs in collaboration with the Ministry of Education of Peru and the National Institute of Educational Research and Development. This 3-year project, establishes in 6 urban and rural sites using community workers as interventionists, would expand to 1500 sites by 1987.|
|1976||Assistance||USAID develops a major new development program for the Sahel and successfully obtains Congressional funding for it.||Sahel|
|1977||Assistance||USAID/Egypt begins providing assistance to the Government of Egypt in the area of population and health.|
|1977||Assistance||USAID in Nepal provides funds to World Education and the Centre for Educational Research Innovation and Development (CERID) at Tribhuvan University to pilot a nonformal education program. This program would evolve into the Nepal National Literacy Program.||Nepal|
|1978||Assistance||USAID becomes deeply involved in reforming the fertilizer supply system of Bangladesh.||Bangladesh|
|1978||Program||USAID starts modification of its centralized model for program and project development, through a series of delegations of authority.|
|1979||Funding||USAID makes the largest donor investment in the establishment of the International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research.|
|1980||Program||USAID launches its Forest Resources Management project, which would contract with the U.S. Forest Service to provide a variety of technical services in forestry to missions.|
|1980||Assistance||USAID starts providing large fertilizer shipments to Kenya as components of various aid packages.||Kenya|
|1981||Program||USAID creates the program MERC, aimed at supporting cooperation in Egyptian-Israeli research.|
|1981||Funding||USAID sponsors the Colloquium on Rural Finance in Low-income Countries. This would be considered a watershed event in rural lending.|
|1982||Policy||USAID issues a policy paper on population assistance, which clearly states its commitment to voluntarism in the provision of family planning (FP) services. Annex PD-3 of the Population Policy of 1982 includes specific requirements for USAID-supported programs that include voluntary sterilization. These requirements cover informed consent, ready access to other methods, and guidelines on incentive payments.|
|1983||Organizaton||USAID establishes the Institute for International Studies in Natural Family Planning at Georgetown University through a 5-year US$15 million grant. The Institute would conduct a program of research, training, and technical assistance to increase the knowledge, availability, acceptability, and effectiveness of natural family planning methods in developing countries.|
|1983||Assistance||USAID begins providing assistance to the Nigerian Federal and State Ministries of Health to develop and implement programs in family planning and child survival.||Nigeria|
|1984||Organization||USAID and the National Cooperative Business Association (NCBA) establish CBI Global, an industry leader that connects coffee and spice farmers to more than 160 companies in over 40 countries.|
|1985||Program||USAID teams up with UNICEF and the United States Congress to launch the Child Survival Revolution, as effort to reduce child mortality in the developing world.|
|1985||Program||USAID launches the Technology and Resources for Child Health Project. This marks the first major effort for a global project that would provide assistance to countries and the global technical community in support of childhood immunization services.|
|1986||Program||USAID launches its HIV and AIDS program. Since then, the agency would play a leading role in averting the global AIDS crisis.|
|1987||Program||USAID starts the HealthTech Program, which is charged with discovering new and appropriate cost effective technologies to apply to immunization programs in the developing world.|
|1988||Organization||USAID creates the Center for International Disaster Information (CIDI), one month after Hurricane Gilbert makes landfall as a Category 5 storm that would affect 10 countries.|
|1989||Assistance||Following Paraguay’s democratic elections, USAID provides support to strengthen the Electoral Tribunal, to help ensure free, fair and transparent elections.||Paraguay|
|1990||Assistance||USAID sponsors a satellite-based forest and other land cover survey in Guatemala in support of that country's tropical forestry action plan. Conservation organizations with matching grants from USAID would employ imagery in tropical America.|
|1991||Program||USAID contracts NASA's Goddard Space Center to map the forest cover in portions of Central Africa.|
|1991||Program||USAID purchases more than 633 million condoms for its family planning service.|
|1991||Assistance||USAID starts providing assistance in Azerbaijan with humanitarian relief and the health sector, as well as economic and democratic reforms.||Azerbaijan|
|1992||Assistance||USAID signs a bilateral agreement on humanitarian, economic and technical cooperation with Ukraine to help the country develop its economic, political and societal potential.||Ukraine|
|1992||Assistance||USAID begins operating in Georgia.||Georgia|
|1993||Assistance||USAID opens its mission in support of Macedonia's transition to a democracy and free-market economy.||Macedonia|
|1994||Program||USAID creates its Microenterprise Initiative to raise the priority of microenterprise to one that matches its importance for poverty alleviation.|
|1995||Legislation to abolish USAID is introduced by Senator Jesse Helms, the Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, with aims at replacing USAID with a grant-making foundation.|
|1996||Program||USAID awards the first grant aimed at promoting democratic transition in Cuba.||Cuba|
|1997||Publication||USAID issues USAID Disability Policy Paper, a non-binding guidance note that has, as its objective, the avoidance of “discrimination against people with disabilities in programs which USAID funds and to stimulate an engagement of host country counterparts, governments, implementing organizations and other donors in promoting a climate of nondiscrimination against and equal opportunity for people with disabilities.”|
|1998||Program||USAID establishes a data repository for collecting and tracking performance data from HIV/AIDS programs.|
|1999||Assistance||USAID begins disbursing multimillion dollar grants for anti-trafficking projects in Russia and Ukraine.||Russia, Ukraine|
|2000||Assistance||USAID funds a large regional anti-trafficking effort for South Asia, managed by the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM), focused on prevention and education in Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.||South Asia|
|2001||Program||USAID creates the West Africa Regional Program headquartered in Bamako, Mali. This program is aimed at working on regional issues supported through a regional approach. It provides capacity building support for the Economic Community of West African States, and support to the West African Power Pool project.||Mali|
|2002||Assistance||USAID and Chevron Corporation form a public-private alliance to revitalize the peace-time economy of Angola. Each commit US$10 million for projects to assist refugees and decommission soldiers returning home after a 27-year civil war.||Angola|
|2003||Program||United States President George W. Bush establishes PEPFAR, the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, putting USAID's HIV/AIDS programs under the direction of the State Department's new Office of the Global AIDS Coordinator.|
|2004||Assistance||USAID helps the Government of Egypt establish the Holding Company for Water and Wastewater (HCWW), a national umbrella organization to standardize and govern local water utility companies, as well as the Egyptian Water Regulatory Authority. USAID also launches a program to strengthen institutional capacity and the policy, legal, and regulatory framework for water distribution and access.||Egypt|
|2005||Assistance||USAID immunizes 97 percent of Iraqi children under five (4.56 million) against polio.||Iraq|
|2006||Program||USAID develops a customs software called the Revenue Authorities Digital Data Exchange (RADDEx), which allows customs officials to communicate virtually across borders, saving time, money and increasing transparency.|
|2008||Controversy||Coca growers union affiliated with Bolivian President Evo Morales eject the 100 employees and contractors from USAID working in the Chapare region, citing frustration with U.S. efforts to persuade them to switch to growing unviable alternatives.||Bolivia|
|2008||Program launch||USAID launches the "Development Leadership Initiative" to reverse the decline in USAID's Foreign Service Officer staffing, which has fallen to a total of about 1,200 worldwide.|
|2009||Assistance||As of June USAID has invested in Iraq approximately US$6.6 billion on programs designed to stabilize communities, foster economic and agricultural growth, and build the capacity of the national, local, and provincial governments to represent and respond to the needs of the people.||Iraq|
|2010||Program||USAID embarks on an ambitious reform, USAID Forward, which becomes critical to achieving the US President's vision to restore the United States as the global leader in international development.|
|2011 (September 19)||Program||USAID and the Ad Council launch the "Famine, War, and Drought" (FWD) campaign to raise awareness about that year's severe drought in East Africa. Through TV and internet ads as well as social media initiatives, FWD encouraged Americans to spread awareness about the crisis, support the humanitarian organizations that were conducting relief operations, and consult the Feed the Future global initiative for broader solutions. Celebrities Geena Davis, Uma Thurman, Josh Hartnett and Chanel Iman take part in the campaign via a series of Public Service Announcements. Corporations like Cargill, General Mills, PepsiCo. and General Mills also sign on to support FWD.|
|2012 (Summer)||Controversy||ALBA countries (Venezuela, Cuba, Ecuador, Bolivia, Nicaragua, San Vicente y Las Granadinas, Dominica, Antigua y Barbuda) call on its members to expel USAID from their countries for interfering with national sovereignty.|
|2013||Local retreat||The President of Bolivia, Evo Morales, asks USAID to close its mission, after having worked in the country for 49 years.||Bolivia|
|2014 (April 3)||Controversy||The Associated Press publishes an investigative report describing how USAID was behind the creation of a social networking text messaging service aimed at creating political dissent and trigger an uprising against the Cuban government.|
|2016 (June)||Staff||USAID's staffing reports to the United States Congress totaling 10,235, including both field missions "overseas" (7,176) and the Washington DC headquarters (3,059).|
|2019||Local retreat||USAID ends its projects in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.||Palestinian territories|
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