An Omaha-based non-profit is working towards establishing MicroDemocracy and management of natural resources in South Sudan.
Aqua Africa's model, which has drawn national attention, starts with fulfilling a basic need - providing clean drinking water to promote sustainable development.
Congress heard testimony from Aqua Africa last week when its executive director, Buey Tut, spoke before the subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights and International Organizations.
Tut says until now, international efforts to provide safe water and sanitation to reverse the poverty, hunger and disease that affect billions, have been focused on aid rather than development. Tut says that is changing.
"They're educated, they're ready and they want to go back. So because we want to go back, we want to take our own destiny into our own hands. And we want capacity-building programs that would enable us to be able to do that. So really, that's what is really changing now is that it's being handed down to us, to Africans, to implement and execute, but we are in the process from the beginning."
Buey Tut immigrated to Omaha with his family at the age of 11. He graduated from UNO, where he majored in Economics and Political Science.