In 2005, all 193 United Nations member countries agreed on eight international development goals to end extreme poverty by the year 2015. The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) set unprecedented targets- halve the number of people living on less than one dollar a day, achieve universal primary education, reduce by two-thirds between 1990 and 2015 under-five child deaths, among others.
To address the many challenges associated with extreme poverty, development partners, in cooperation with host countries in Africa, established Millennium Villages which are accelerating progress towards achieving the MDGs.
Today, a study published in the Lancet shows that the Millennium Villages Project is working to improve the health of people living in rural African communities. Using a systematic and multifaceted approach, these communities are improving their own health systems and reducing child mortality rates three times faster than comparable communities. Jeffrey Sachs, director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University, reported on the study today in the Huffington Post. Preview the article below, and follow the link to the full piece.
Breakthroughs in Health in the Millennium Villages
Co-authored by Jeffrey Sachs, Sonia Sachs and Prabhjot Sing
In Africa’s Millennium Villages (MVs), local communities are taking many actions in health care, agriculture, education, and other challenges to achieve the Millennium Development Goals. Their hard work is paying off. In just three years, the mortality rate among children under five dropped by 22 percent. This pace is three times faster than national trends in the rural areas, and is fast enough to achieve the Millennium Development Goal for child mortality (MDG 4). These results, detailed in a Lancet study published today, reinforce the global effort to build effective, low-cost, community-led health care systems that can end millions of deaths of young children and pregnant women each year.