Presenter Information

Catherine Hull

Duquesne University

Abstract

Foreign aid comes in many forms. Foreign aid ranges from large-scale disaster relief to small-scale individual projects within communities. Most aid efforts have the same goal – to help those who would benefit from assistance. This case study addresses the question: what form of ‘help’ is helpful? Which type of aid best achieves what it sets out to accomplish?

To directly analyze the effect of foreign aid on a region, the water-conscious organization Pure Thirst traveled to the rural community of Olkokola, Tanzania. Pure Thirst worked alongside the community members to provide a form of humanitarian aid: improved water services to the community. In light of this experience, the humanitarian aid that Pure Thirst provided to Okokola is the basis for this paper.

Based on the ongoing results of Pure Thirst’s project in comparison with large-scale aid, it can be concluded that all foreign aid presents challenges. However, in terms of what makes aid effective (long-term effectiveness not short-term efficiency), a local, grassroots level project that values community input is an optimal approach to foreign aid efforts.

School

A. J. Palumbo School of Business Administration and John F. Donahue Graduate School of Business

Advisor

Dr. Matt E. Ryan

Submission Type

Paper

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Is "Help" Helpful?: Analyzing Foreign Aid in Context of Scale

Foreign aid comes in many forms. Foreign aid ranges from large-scale disaster relief to small-scale individual projects within communities. Most aid efforts have the same goal – to help those who would benefit from assistance. This case study addresses the question: what form of ‘help’ is helpful? Which type of aid best achieves what it sets out to accomplish?

To directly analyze the effect of foreign aid on a region, the water-conscious organization Pure Thirst traveled to the rural community of Olkokola, Tanzania. Pure Thirst worked alongside the community members to provide a form of humanitarian aid: improved water services to the community. In light of this experience, the humanitarian aid that Pure Thirst provided to Okokola is the basis for this paper.

Based on the ongoing results of Pure Thirst’s project in comparison with large-scale aid, it can be concluded that all foreign aid presents challenges. However, in terms of what makes aid effective (long-term effectiveness not short-term efficiency), a local, grassroots level project that values community input is an optimal approach to foreign aid efforts.

 

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