Uzbekistan Fact Sheet Mar 2005

CHF International Has:
- Created 72 Community Improvement Councils (CIC).

- Initiated more than 220 projects, including school heating systems, community water provision and gas distribution services, since May 2002.

- Improved social and economic conditions for more than 500,000 community members.

- Created nearly 600 permanent jobs; approximately 2,100 short-term jobs.

- Facilitated over 300 trainings for community members in project planning, management and maintenance, community mobilization, economic development, conflict management and fundrais-ing.

Investing in Community Action

Uzbekistan gained its independence in 1991. Since then the country has been slow to change its policies towards democracy and a free market economy. The closed economic structure has not allowed for strong economic development.

In Uzbekistan, CHF International is working to reduce potential for conflict through community-led initiatives that will integrate democratic principles into local procedures, while providing opportunities for improvement of social infrastructure, as well as economic development initiatives.

CHF International is active in 72 rural and urban communities in southern Uzbekistan. CHF International forms and enables community groups called Community Improvement Councils (CIC) to define, prioritize, plan and implement a series of community improvement projects, while bringing together local stakeholders and government officials.

CHF International provides citizen groups with training and technical assistance in order to improve their planning, negotiation and management skills. The citizens' groups manage infrastructure projects funded by CHF and community members on behalf of the entire community, who all have significant input throughout the process.

CHF International has assisted in developing over 220 small infrastructure projects that improve their socioeconomic conditions of people in Uzbekistan. To date, communities have matched US$500,000 cash and in-kind contributions against CHF's $US1.1 million.

CHF has assisted in the establishment of dozens of micro-enterprises, and has also helped to improve business people's and entrepreneurs' access to information.

CHF International creates specific opportunities for women and young people to participate in decision making and demonstrate the tangible positive economic benefits of local control and inter-community cooperation. Currently, women comprise of 42% of CIC members.

CHF International serves as a catalyst for long-lasting positive change in low- and moderate-income communities around the world, helping to improve their housing, economic circumstances, and environments. Since 1952, CHF International has worked in over 100 countries worldwide