TICAD: Towards a Vibrant Africa
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TICAD: Towards a Vibrant Africa
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The Tokyo International Conference on African Development is more than just a conference. It has become a major global framework for Asia, Africa, and the UNDP to collaborate in promoting Africa's development. Here are five projects working to improve people's everyday lives throughout the continent. Produced by UNDP.

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Segment 1

Towards a Vibrant Africa: A Continent of Hope & Opportunity
Tanzania Bed Net Factory (Japanese/Tanzanian joint venture)
More than 1 million people die of malaria each year
Mosquito nets are an effective and economical method of preventing the disease
ELIREHEMA MANGA [resident of Manyata village]
I often suffered from malaria before we got the nets. I couldn't cultivate my land because I was often sick. The difference is huge because now I feel healthy and strong. I'm feeling so much better that I'm able to work, make a little money, and go to the market. Everyone's earnings have improved because we can all work hard to cultivate crops.
Mosquito Net Factory [Arusha, Tanzania]
BINESH HARIA [Chief Operating Officer, A to Z Textile Mills]
What we want to do here is save lives, by manufacturing these products in Africa, and also reduce poverty. We've already created 3,200 direct employment.
LUCY THOMAS [Employee, A to Z Textile Mills]
Before, I was living with my parents. But now I can afford to live alone and pay for my brother's school fees. I'm truly proud of the work I do, because it's helping prevent malaria.
What we are producing is a product which is going to be sold in Africa, and that is why I say Africa for Africa. What we want is: Africa should be able to sustain itself.
Since receiving the nets, all our lives have improved. My fellow villagers and I are very grateful.

Segment 2

Sierra Leone Schools & Community Centres ("Arms for Development" project Japan/UNDP)
After 11 years of devastating civil war, Sierra Leone is now recovering from conflict
Now former combatants are encouraged to surrender their arms in exchange for community development projects
The entire region is now arms free.
Community centres and schools are at the heart of the recovery effort
MARYLEEN BANGURA [Resident of Binkolo Village]
I was seven years old when the rebels came in Binkolo. They attacked us here, and my mother was carrying me on her back, holding my sister on her hand. We had to run to the bushes where she damaged ... her lip had a cut.
ANGELA BANGURA [resident of Binkolo Village]
I was bleeding profusely and I was feeling dizzy. I fell for the first time, second time, and then the third time she suggested that I should put her down. She always watched my movements. When I crawled, she also crawled. When I got up and tried to run, she followed my footsteps. That's the way we traveled the worst of the night, until we arrived in the next village the next morning. It's a night I pray that I will never repeat in my lifetime.
I don't like to hear about this past war, because it caused many damages in our country. Arms and feet of people were cut off. Houses were burnt. Some were killed. Some, when they killed, gave it to another human being to eat raw flesh. So I don't want to hear about it. I always like to think about my future than listen to the past.
School supported by Arms for Development Programme
The best part of my life now is that I'm going to school. All of the school lessons are free for everybody, so they have the opportunity to attend. I'm really concentrating on my education because I want to be somebody in the future, like I want to be a lawyer. That's my dream, and I know my dream is going to come true.
Community centre supported by Arms for Development Programme
ABBAS A. BANGURA [Chairman, Masamanke Development Association]
Life is changing rapidly here. When this community center wasn't around life was really difficult here. But now we can see so many kids every day are meeting here.
For my future, I'm seeing that it's going to be successful for me. Because I'm now attending school. I'm with my parents, they encourage me to learn. And for the country, I know my country is going to develop.

Segment 3

Burkina Faso Multifunctional Platform (The UN Trust Fund for Human Security)
Over 95 percent of rural households in Africa lack electrical power
A unique electric generator helps villagers with their daily lives
IDANI ABIBA (resident of Komboari Village)
Before the multifunctional electric generator, my life was very difficult. I had to wake early to pound millet, fetch water, and cook. Now I have more time to spend on other activities.
OUOBA B. BENOIT [Tin Tua Association]
In our country, the difficulty of getting drinkable water and pounding the millet take up the women's entire day. With the introduction of the multiplatform generator, this changed.
Multifunctional platform (electric generator)
Now woman have more time.
We now have time to learn to read and write. This opens our minds and makes us happy. With the generator, we also have many services. We used to have to go far to repair broken equipment. But now we can do welding in town. Because of the electric generator, everyone has free time to spend on other activities. Thanks to the generator our lives have changed for the better.

Segment 4

Uganda Millennium Village (The UN Trust Fund for Human Security)
More than 40 percent of the population of Africa lives on less than USD$1 a day
The Millennium Villages project empowers communities to break the cycle of poverty
FRIDAH TUMUHIMBISE [resident of Ruhiira Millennium Village]
My family never used to have enough food to eat. But ever since the Millennium Village project, my family is able to cultivate enough food. We used to spend a lot of time preparing food for the children. But since they now eat at school, we have time to do other things. There's also a clinic where people are treated, and in case of complications an ambulance takes us to another hospital. It [the project] has helped by starting a village bank where women can borrow for our businesses. I bought sheep and goats, sold two of their offspring, and bought iron sheets to build a kitchen.
DAVID SIRIRI [Millennium Village Coordinator]
The thing about this project is empowerment of communities. It's about involving communities in taking leadership, in ensuring that they have a say in their destiny. It's not just coming and dropping something on the ground; you have to get the villagers involved. This project has given a sense of ownership, a sense of belonging, a sense of leadership. The communities can stand up and say, "Yes, this is our project." They are seeing the impact of the interventions. People are now flocking [to] the health centers. Before you only used to have one or two people, now you have 150 people coming to the health units. Water was a major problem. Now the water is clean. Now we have students attending school right from P1 up to P7 without dropping out. All these things have brought new hope and it's a new way of rural devolvement that had never happened here.
If the project continues another 10 years, we can better our situation, we can educate our children and really improve our lives.

Segment 5

Nigeria Woman Empowerment Project (UNDP/Japan WID Fund)
In Nigeria, woman are traditionally disadvantaged, lacking access to resources and skills
Encouraging female enterprises is key to development and social equality
NFON (GRACE) ETETE ITUEN [resident of Onna Village]
When my husband died, my children were very young, so I had to struggle a long way for them to go to school. And to eat was very difficult. But I thank God now that it's getting improved. Now under community partnership I can do these buns, chin chin [cookies], egg rolls, which people come in and buy. I have a little money every day.
Onna Woman Development Centre
MRS. NSE UDOH [Director, Community Partners for Development]
The project has really affected the lives of the women in Onna local government area. They've been empowered to the extent that they can actually assist the family in basic feeding and clothing. After the training they've been able to replicate what was taught. They now make the products by themselves. They go and sell them in the town, and are able to market their product. We are hoping that, eventually, when the mill starts in full swing, they will be able to do large quantities, and send it out to many other local government states. The women now meet on their own, monthly, so the excitement they have, coming out to share issues with each other ... Women, as you know, especially in our own society, have been relegated to the background for years. And it's only now that they are now given the opportunity to comment, to air their views.
Everyone around me is improving because all of us are now busy in doing what we're supposed to do. As the community progresses, I'm sure it will be better.
[end credits]
UNDP Produced by the Office of Communications for TICAD