In Nepal,  USAID launched a Global Climate Change Program.  The new program, Hariyo Ban, is a five-year program and cornerstone of President Obama’s Global Climate Change Initiative.  Climate change is emerging as a major threat to the people and biodiversity of Nepal. Hariyo Ban, which means “green forests” in Nepali, will help to build resilience to climate change in communities, ecosystems and keystone wildlife species by restoring and conserving Nepal’s forests.  It will also improve the livelihoods of Nepal’s most impoverished communities.  Over the project period, the program will reduce emissions/sequester over 1 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalents in the target landscapes.  The program will also provide capacity building and livelihood development support to 180,000 people; bring 50,000 hectares of forest area under improved management and generate vital revenue from payments for environmental services systems.

In Ukraine, Acting USAID Mission Director, Sarah Wines Welcomed Ukrainian Parliamentary and Executive Internship Program Graduates.  She presented identification cards to 102 new interns of the USAID Parliamentary and Executive Internship Program during an official welcoming ceremony in Kyiv. Also participating were Dmytro Markov, Deputy Secretary General of the Rada, and Taras Prytula, Head of the Interns’ League. Over the coming months, students and recent college graduates from nearly all regions of Ukraine will work in 28 Parliamentary committees and departments, as well as in six Ministries of Ukraine. Explaining the program’s significance to the interns, Ms. Wines stated that “in these halls, very important decisions are made, that affect people in very real ways.” Composed of 78 Parliamentary interns and 24 interns in the Executive branch of government, the 2011-2012 intern class comprises a diverse range of disciplines, including those studying law, economics, international relations and in the technical disciplines. Ms. Wines encouraged the students to use their skills to bring fresh ideas to government service, and confirmed the U.S. Government’s commitment to partnership with Ukraine and its democracy through the USAID Parliamentary Development Program.