Launched in 2006, the Clinton-Hunter Development Initiative (CHDI) is a collaborative
effort of the Clinton Foundation and the Hunter
Foundation to catalyze sustainable economic growth in Africa. CHDI is pursuing
this mission with a ten-year operating budget of $100 million, committed by Sir
Tom Hunter during the inaugural meeting of the Clinton
Credit: Clinton Foundation
President Clinton and Scottish entrepreneur Sir Tom Hunter at the
inaugural session of the Clinton Global Initiative, in which Hunter committed $100 million to fighting poverty.
CHDI recognizes that sustainable economic growth is dependent on food security,
clean water and sanitation, and quality health care, yet driven by market demand.
CHDI therefore emphasizes development programs that are integrated across sectors;
scalable and sustainable by partner governments and communities; and responsive
to market realities.
At the request of the Governments of Rwanda and Malawi, CHDI currently works
in these two countries. In Rwanda, CHDI operates in the Eastern Province, in
a catchment area of approximately 425,000 people. In Malawi, CHDI is active
in Dowa, Neno, Mwanza, and Chitipa Districts, which have a combined population
of approximately 584,000 people. In both countries, CHDI also works at the national
level on specific issues.
The majority of people living in CHDI catchment areas rely on agriculture for
survival. Accordingly, CHDI is working with the Governments of Rwanda and Malawi
- Improve farmers’ productivity by expanding their access to fertilizer,
disease-resistant seeds, irrigation systems, advanced planting techniques,
- Cultivate domestic and international markets for agriculture produce;
- Help develop value-added agricultural products;
- Address transportation costs and other impediments to cost-effective trade;
- Expand access to clean water and sanitation, particularly in health facilities
and schools; and
- Strengthen rural hospitals and health clinics in collaboration with Partners
Hopeful signs abound. CHDI’s assistance with the single largest purchase
of fertilizer in Rwandan history—at significantly reduced prices—is
helping to increase farmers’ productivity and to establish food security
for thousands of families in eastern Rwanda. Consistent with CHDI’s
integrated approach, these families also now have access to a local hospital
that has been renovated by CHDI and Partners In Health, in collaboration with
the Government of Rwanda and other partners. The maintenance costs of this
hospital are sustainable within the Government of Rwanda’s healthcare
A cassava garden in Malawi grown with techniques from the Clinton
Hunter Development Initiative.
CHDI plans to continue working with the Governments of Rwanda and Malawi to
implement innovative, market-based programs that generate sustainable economic
growth. Additional programs may seek to strengthen farmers’ associations;
develop storage options for agricultural surplus; supplant imports with home-grown
goods; develop agri-businesses such as tomato processing and cassava starch
production; and strengthen educational infrastructure.