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Twelve Promising Steps Forward for Global Development in 2012

UNITED NATIONS, Jan 29 2013 (IPS) - As the developing world is fervently renewing and accelerating its efforts to achieve the Millenium Development Goals (MDGs) by 2015, and after a recent record-low in U.N. donor contributions for 2012, the U.N. Development Program (UNDP) on Monday recognised 12 stories of success.

UNDP Administrator Helen Clark, announced the winners of the agency’s international storytelling competition – now in its second year – which called on colleagues from country offices and collaborating organisations to submit stories that illustrate the cooperative progress made in four core areas of development: poverty reduction, democratic governance, crisis prevention and recovery, and environment and sustainable development.

“The common thread running through these stories is the change and benefits we bring to the lives of some of the poorest and most vulnerable individuals around the world,” according to Clark.

The UNDP’s panel of judges, which included representatives of the Permanent Missions of Australia and Canada to the U.N., as well as renowned international journalists, considered 120 submissions from 66 different countries.

Taking first place, Daniel de Castro and Jacob Said’s “Eco-Stoves Empower Indigenous Women”, discusses the major impact of new, energy-efficient wood stoves on the local environment and the quality of life for indigenous peoples in Brazil’s tropical savannah.

Writing from Bangladesh, Mahtab Haider and Nader Rahman won second place with their story, “Empowering Women to Fight Poverty”, on the vast potential of women to raise their communities out of poverty through external support in the form of vocational training, entrepreneurial grants, and infrastructure building.

Third place went to Adam Pitt’s story, “Farmers Plant a Seed for a Chemical-Free Future”, which tells of farmers in China who are replacing toxic chemical pesticides with natural mechanisms that simultaneously spare the environment and allow farmers to legally trade their new, higher-quality products in foreign markets.

The 12 winning stories were featured in the second annual publication of “The Development Advocate”, which Clark presented at the 2013 First Regular Session of the UNDP Executive Board on Monday, giving framed copies to the high-level representatives in attendance from each of the winning countries.


+”The Development Advocate”, Volume 2, 28 January 2013 (http://www.undp.org/content/undp/en/home/librarypage/corporate/the_development_advocate_vol_2.html)

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