The 2010 World Food Prize ceremony was held in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday, June 16th celebrating the winners of the prestigious $250,000 award honoring accomplishments that have improved the global food supply. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Dr. Rajiv Shah, and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack were the keynote speakers helping celebrate the fight to end global hunger.

Dr. Shah travelled to Dakar, Senegal to speak at the opening ceremony of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Food Security Investment Forum.

A meeting was held in Washington, D.C. hosted by the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars where the topic of discussion was finding business solutions for nutrition problems. Dr. Rajiv Shah explained that USAID will be making some changes regarding investments focusing more on aligning investments in grain storage, market information systems, and feeder roads. Dr. Shah also mentioned that President Obama has committed to spending at least $3.5 billion over three years for agricultural development and food access.

On Monday, June 14, USAID provided the Government of Southern Sudan (GOSS) with six vehicles intended to help supervise construction of current road projects. According to Jacob Marial, the Director-General of Roads and Bridges in Southern Sudan, “These vehicles will fill an important gap in the Sudan road monitoring system,” and “provide access to road facilities in a timely fashion.” In areas with poor road conditions, reliable emergency transportation has been a concern. The vehicles are funded through USAID’s Capacity-Building Program/Sudan Infrastructure Services Project (SISP) and are expected to help road supervisors effectively manage and maintain roads in the area.

This week at the US Embassy in Baku, USAID implemented the “Healthy Food” project in Azerbaijan. Discussions focused on how critical natural and healthy food is to the human body. USAID Coordinator for Azerbaijan, Karen Welch stated, “Two of five women of the reproductive age in Azerbaijan suffer from a lack of iron and anemia. USAID implements various activities to promote healthy eating to overcome such problems.” USAID has operated in Azerbaijan for 15 years.

During a meeting between the Vice President of the Government of Southern Sudan, Dr. Riek Machar Teny and the United States Consul General in Juba, Ava Rogers, Tuesday the United States government announced a $60 million contribution to aid Southern Sudan with their upcoming referendum. The funds will be channeled through USAID. Other agencies such as the National Democratic Institute (NDI) will be providing technical support during the process as well.