ISLAMABAD - The US Agency for International Development arranged a conference here on Wednesday and discussed the results of it entrepreneurs project that showed 22,000 flood-affected dairy farmers throughout Pakistan have doubled their income after getting training since May 2010. The beneficiaries, mostly the women of different USAID projects, were also present in the conference. While answering to some questions made by media personals they explained how training and support given to them by USAID helped them recover from the losses of flood.

Catherine Moore Deputy Mission Director, USAID Pakistan on the occasion said, “USAID’s support through its Entrepreneurs project has been one of our major initiatives towards helping conflict and flood affected communities. These communities needed to get back on their feet and start their lives all over again and the sooner they did it, the better. I am happy to know that with your support, and the resilience of the people of these communities, this is exactly what has happened”.

She also said that USAID’s Entrepreneurs Project provided 7,200 families affected by conflict in Malakand with agricultural inputs, livestock/poultry, sewing machines and tool kits for special trades in 2010, increasing the incomes of beneficiaries 12.5 times more. She also told that around 41,500 flood-affected families across Pakistan recovered their livelihoods through the assistance provided by the Entrepreneurs Project and in most of the cases they just did not recover but even managed to increase their income level as compared to their previous level. Dr Zafar Iqbal Qadir, Chairman of the National Disaster Management Authority, speaking at the occasion said, “I would like to thank the U.S. government for their prompt response to our urgent need and for bringing tears of joy and hope to thousands of conflict and flood-affected families as they struggled to stand on their feet once again”.

He said that this initiative is just one part of a comprehensive U.S. economic assistance program which creates jobs and boosts incomes with projects that expand Pakistan’s agricultural output, build roads to facilitate trade, and offer a private equity fund to help small- and medium-size businesses grow.