50 Years Creating a Hemisphere of Opportunity for All

Promote Social Progress

Strong communities are an essential part of the social fabric. PADF helps build resilient communities from where prosperity can grow.

Strong communities are an essential part of the social fabric-and socail progress. They provide a platform on which human development can grow.

Providing the tools, technologies and methods that enable communities to become strong and dynamic creates a platform on which human development and social progress can happen.

PADF develops programs that integrate public and private sector partners to address education, health, infrastructure, community development and other priority needs in impoverished areas.

  • Implementing Community-Driven Development
  • Improving Infrastructure and  Housing
  • Expanding Access to Technical Training and Health Services through In-Kind Donations
  • Combating Trafficking in Persons, Community-based Violence and Gang Activities
  • Aiding Youth At-risk of being recruited into Gangs and Criminal Activities
  • Building Social Capital, Resilient Communities, and Neighborhoods
  • Mobilizing Diaspora Remittances for Development

Implementing Community-Driven Development

The Community-driven development (CDD) strategy transforms the traditional development model by transferring control over resources and decision-making from development organizations to communities. This allows communities to identify their needs and the development options that work best for them. Then they take the lead in carrying out projects that aim to improve their lives. This approach promotes self-reliance, emphasizes transparency and accountability, empowers citizens and creates more responsive local governments. 

In the past eight years, CDD supported more than 1,000 projects that have helped turn local communities in Haiti into engines of economic growth and job creation. Projects under CDD include improving livestock reproduction, outfitting fishermen with modern equipment, improving poultry production and setting up artisan and tailor workshops, among others.

PADF’s Rural Community-Driven Development (PRODEP) project, which has been implemented in coordination with Haiti’s Bureau for Monetization and emphasizes development of community productive enterprises that generate employment, was extended thanks to $1 million in additional funding. Meanwhile, the Caribbean Development Bank provided additional funding for the Urban Community-Driven Development (PRODEPUR) project.

Improving Infrastructure and Housing

Good infrastructure plays an important role in the development of communities, as it contributes to improved agriculture, education, transportation, health, communications and disaster mitigation. This is particularly true in disaster-prone areas and rural communities where infrastructure may have been damaged, is often limited, or remains in disrepair.

With the support of trusted partners, PADF has worked throughout the region to build, improve and rehabilitate schools, homes, public squares, health and training centers, shelters, roads, bridges, water sources, irrigation systems and many others. This has proved critical in ensuring that communities continue to grow.

In Haiti, PADF continued to repair quake-damaged infrastructure. With more than $13.6 million in funding from the American Red Cross, the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund and Caterpillar, PADF repaired more than 9,700 damaged yet reparable homes.

PADF also received $1.5 million from Colombia’s Department for Social Prosperity (DPS) to repair and rebuild infrastructure damaged by flooding in eight departments (provinces) and contribute to the socio-economic recovery of affected areas.

Expanding Access to Technical Training and Health Services through In-Kind Donations

Thanks to partnerships with U.S. medical institutions, public agencies, manufacturers, and universities, PADF’s In-Kind Donations Program sent 26 shipments of medical and hospital equipment, tools and computers worth $6.1 million to institutions in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, El Salvador, Haiti and Uruguay. This assistance is contributing to the development of vocational training programs that are designed to help low-income students increase their incomes and become self-sufficient. By using donated tools and equipment to complement technical training, PADF enables beneficiaries of all ages to gain marketable skills, raising the pool of qualified job applicants and improving the training institutions’ capacity to teach.


Combating Trafficking in Persons, Community-based Violence and Gang Activities

PADF works to strengthen networks among civil society groups to build their capacity to combat violence on the community level, including domestic servitude of children, violence and torture, rape and abuse of women, gender-based violence and labor exploitation of youth. This support enables civil society organizations that lead national networks to train smaller organizations, improve violence data collection systems, and systematize and disseminate this information at the community level and for public policy design. It also helps to link organizations with government entities that are responsible for assuring adherence to laws so that citizens have the confidence in the judicial system to report crimes and seek assistance.

In June, PADF signed a $1 million agreement with the Department of Social Prosperity (DPS) Victims Support and Land Restitution Unit to develop a diagnostic and a strategic preventive model to combat children and youth recruitment into illegal armed groups and gangs in 63 prioritized municipalities.

In Mexico, a PADF-led anti-human trafficking mass media campaign reached more than 5 million people in 11 cities, including Mexico City. This initiative was part of an alliance that PADF helped create with the support of the U.S. Department of State, Mexican government entities, civil society organizations and corporate partners MTV EXIT Latin America, Telefónica Foundation, Cinépolis Foundation and EMC.


Aiding Youth At-risk of being recruited into Gangs and Criminal Activities

In areas where children and youth are at risk of being recruited by armed groups and gangs, PADF develops programs that ensure that youth are protected and have better access to education, skills training, and job opportunities. Our programs focus on nurturing an environment that reduces children’s and youth’s vulnerability to illegal activities, using recreation, sports, art, culture, educational strengthening, and leisure activities to foster personal growth.

Building Social Capital, Resilient Communities, and Neighborhoods

PADF knows that building strong communities requires engaging people of diverse backgrounds in a community and empowering them to face a wide range of development challenges. This is why PADF develops programs that include capacity-building classes, training and awareness-raising of key issues that are relevant to communities.  These include violence, child and youth exploitation, human trafficking, human rights, discrimination, labor rights, disaster mitigation and preparedness and many others. 

In Haiti, the Caribbean Development Bank provided $1 million in additional funding for PADF’s Urban Community-Driven Development (PRODEPUR) project to support 28 projects in the Bel Air and Martissant neighborhoods of Port-au-Prince. This additional funding, which benefitted 1,400 people, supported management training for community-based organizations and capacity building through technical assistance to the local municipalities.

Mobilizing Diaspora Remittances for Development

Diaspora remittances continue to be a strong source of income for millions of people in the Americas.  For a decade, PADF has worked with diaspora groups to channel funding for transnational development projects in their communities of origin. Through this approach, U.S.-based immigrant groups direct community remittances to projects that generate jobs and raise family incomes back home. In turn, PADF provides training and capacity-building programs for the partner immigrant groups on prioritizing development needs, raising funds and implementing and evaluating projects they support.

In June, PADF, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of El Salvador and the Organization of American States jointly hosted a regional conference in San Salvador to discuss the important role that the private sector and diaspora remittances play in improving education in Central America. The conference included government labor officials from the region, corporate representatives, diplomats, researchers and non-profit organization leaders.