GAZA, July 2014

 

Two weeks of escalated violence have left more than 115,000 people in the Gaza Strip in urgent need of food assistance. The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) has already reached over 100,000 with emergency food rations since the crisis started but is running low on ready-to-eat food stocks as needs continue to increase.

WFP is mobilizing more food to the Gaza strip through local procurement and by airlifting food from the UN Humanitarian Response Depot (UNHRD) in Dubai  (1st and 2ndPhotos: WFP/Leslie Delos Santos).

This food, packaged in Dubai, finally has reached people in the Gaza strip (3rd and 4th Photos: WFP/Ayman Shublaq).

 

To continue its food assistance programmes in Palestine, WFP, which is funded by voluntary contributions, needs an immediate US$20 million until the end of the year. Meeting the needs as a result of the emergency in Gaza will require additional resources.

 

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Koch, South Sudan, July 2014

A total of 21,000 people in Koch have registered to receive rations.  Even before the conflict, Koch was considered one of the most food insecure areas of the country and is now currently at emergency levels under the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) system.  The situation has been exacerbated by disrupted markets, fighting and roads closed due to seasonal rains.

WFP and partners in South Sudan have so far managed to reach more than 1.1 million people affected by the conflict, overcoming enormous challenges to reach people in very difficult circumstances. The agency currently has a funding shortfall of $475 million. 

Photos: WFP/Jaqueline Dent

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South Sudanese Refugees Worry About Future 

The humanitarian crisis in South Sudan is becoming a regional tragedy. Tens of thousands have fled South Sudan, many to Ethiopia. Many say they had to flee mainly because of the conflict but also because there was no food or water back home. WFP is providing food assistance, including High Energy Biscuits, and nutritious food supplements for those who are malnourished or at risk of malnutrition.

 In the photos: WFP implementing partner Concern measures the arm circumference of children to assess their nutritional state and to provide fortified supplementary food to the mothers and children in need.

All photos: UNMISS/JC McIlwaine

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South Sudanese Refugees Worry About Future 

The humanitarian crisis in South Sudan is becoming a regional tragedy. Tens of thousands have fled South Sudan, many to Ethiopia. Many say they had to flee mainly because of the conflict but also because there was no food or water back home. WFP is providing food assistance, including High Energy Biscuits, and nutritious food supplements for those who are malnourished or at risk of malnutrition.

 In the photos: WFP implementing partner Concern measures the arm circumference of children to assess their nutritional state and to provide fortified supplementary food to the mothers and children in need.

All photos: UNMISS/JC McIlwaine

Lebanon, 8 May 2014

 

The conflict in Syria continues to impact the humanitarian situation resulting in significant humanitarian needs.  

Access to basic needs including food, water, electricity and medical supplies has been interrupted in areas witnessing armed activities. A growing number of main breadwinners have become unemployed and soaring food and fuel prices across the country have also exacerbated the situation. In response, WFP – in partnership with the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) and 23 other local organizations– is providing monthly food assistance to close to 3 million Syrians and will scale up to feed 4 million people by October. Food rations contain rice, bulgur, pasta, dried and canned pulses, oil, tomato paste, salt and sugar and are enough for one month. With serious bread shortages across the country, in April WFP also started the distribution of wheat flour providing 5 kilograms of flour per person per month. WFP uses over 700 trucks a month to dispatch food to hundreds of distribution points across the country, as well as delivering other goods for the humanitarian community.  

Hundreds of thousands of families have fled the violence in their country and have taken refuge in Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey and Egypt. Humanitarian needs assessments in these countries showed that food is a top priority and WFP is responding to refugees’ needs with food distributions and innovative food vouchers.

 

Photo 1

A Syrian refugee at a counter in a local shop in Zahle in the Bekaa. He bought raw chicken and meat using WFP’s electronic card. With this system, refugees can buy fresh produce not normally included in food parcels.

Photo 2

 

Syrian refugee mother in her thirties, feeding bread to her baby daughter in the Bekaa where WFP helps Syrian refugees meet their food needs through the innovative E-card system. . “We wait for the electronic cards impatiently every month” says Zeinab.

 

Photo 3

Fatima, a Syrian refugee mother, in her twenties with her daughter and her niece at the door of their tent in an informal tented settlement in Saadnayel town in the Bekaa. Fatima receives WFP E-cards that are automatically loaded unto the card on a monthly basis, allowing Her to take care of her family.

 

 Photo 4

A 60 year old Syrian refugee woman with her grandson in front of their tent in a tented settlement in Saadnayel town in the Bekaa.

 

 Photo 5

“Securing food and paying the rental cost of the land for our tents are our priority needs,” Mohamad, a Syrian refugee told WFP officials during a meeting aimed at soliciting their feedback about WFP’s assistance programme and the impact of the electronic cards on refugees’ lives.

 

All photos: WFP/Laure Chadraoui

WFP Assistance to the conflict affected people in Iraq

ERBIL, Iraq – United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) Executive Director Ertharin Cousin on Wednesday ended a two-day visit to Iraq, after meeting families who have fled from the violence in Mosul and holding high-level talks with the Kurdistan Regional Government and other officials.

“Yet again, another humanitarian crisis hits war-torn Iraq, disproportionately and negatively impacting the hungry poor. The most vulnerable and poorest families have already experienced their share of tragedy over the last few years,” said Cousin. “Many are displaced in very harsh conditions.  Lack of services, support and insecurity is forcing them to move around – in too many cases making these families difficult to reach.”

Cousin stopped at the Kalak transit camp – between Mosul and Erbil – and met displaced people who fled the recent fighting in Mosul. Families sat in newly erected tents and makeshift shelters in 45 degrees Celsius heat. They told her that they left their homes with only the clothes on their backs.

“Only the strong and lucky, who could walk for hours in this scorching heat or those who have the means to travel by car arrived here at the transit camp,” said Cousin. Among them was a man from Mosul, who told her he was worried he would not be able to fast during the upcoming Holy Month of Ramadan in harsh conditions with little access to water, electricity and other necessities.

“The UN and the entire humanitarian community are surging staff, releasing funds and drawing on all available stocks to assist people affected by the fighting and meet the urgent growing needs,” Cousin added.

WFP has launched an emergency operation to feed more than half a million people hit by the latest conflict in Iraq, amid security and funding challenges. Before the new wave of displacements, starting with the violence in Mosul, WFP had already been assisting 240,000 people displaced by conflict in Iraq’s al-Anbar Governorate, as well as more than 180,000 refugees from the conflict in Syria who sought refuge in Iraq.

WFP, which is funded entirely by voluntary donations, needs $US88 million for its operations in Iraq from July to December 2014.

Photo credits:

Photos 1 and 2: WFP/Abeer Etefa

Photos 3,4 5 and 6: WFP/Alessandro Pavone

Photo 7: WFP/Abeer Etefa

 

With your help WFP can score the Goal of eradicating hunger worldwide within our lifetimes.

 

One of the tools that WFP uses are the school meals projects.

Find out more on our web site: http://www.wfp.org/school-meals?icn=homepage-school-meals&ici=ourwork-link

 

Captions:

Photos 1 and 2:

Democratic Republic of the Congo 12 June 2014

 One school meal is served each day, at 10:30am. The meal is served relatively early because most students come from home without having had breakfast or anything to eat in the morning.

The school meal consists of maize flour, salt and fortified flour. Sometimes rice, peas, and beans are also included. Students from the nearby community will often bring a little of the produce that their families are able to grow to help supplement the meals and make them more tasty. In general, the students really LIKE the food – and you can see this as they eat at lunch time!

Before WFP started providing nutritious school meals at Mwamba, enrolment was not particularly high. Since 2010, the school enrolment has more than DOUBLED. Every year, they actually need to build another classroom to house more students!

You can see the difference in students’ energy levels before and after they eat lunch. Kids are more likely to raise their hands and participate in class, so teachers often work their schedules around the lunch hour ensuring their students have tests, etc. only after they’ve had their meal.

The energy that the school meal provides allows the children to have the energy necessary to learn successfully and to undertake sports such as football.

 

Photos: WFP/Rein Skullerud

 Photo three:

Jordan, Mafraq, Zaatari Camp, November 2012



WFP is providing food assistance to Syrian refugees in camps, transit centres and for families staying with host communities throughout Jordan. During the month of October, WFP transitioned from the provision of hot meals in Zaatari refugee camp in Mafraq Governorate and King Abdullah Park transit centre in Ramtha Governorate to the distribution of dry rations that the refugees can cook themselves. The monthly food basket includes rice, bulgur wheat, pulses (yellow split peas), sugar and salt in addition to a daily bread distribution to the refugees. The camp currently houses some 20,000 Syrian refugees (though this figure changes daily given the arrivals and departures) of which 75 percent are women and children. UNHCR and WFP have set up over 100 communal kitchens around the camp to allow the refugees to prepare their own meals from WFP food basket as per their local taste. This will also diversify the food consumption. 100 more kitchens are still under preparation. WFP continues to provide welcome food packets to new arrivals in Zaatari refugee camp, many of whom have made a long and risky journey to the Jordanian border. Elsewhere in the country, WFP is assisting Syrians living in host communities and plans to reach 250,000 by the end of the year through food vouchers or distributions of food baskets. The conflict in Syria has hit food prices in Jordan. Food exports from Syria have been disrupted and this, together with poor harvests this year in Jordan due to an especially dry and hot summer, have led to a steep increase in vegetable prices. The Jordanian Department of Statistics have recently cited a 32 percent increase in vegetable prices this July as compared to 2011.

Eslam, 9, is Zaatari camp’s Messi. Wearing Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi’s no. 10 shirt, Eslam plays football every day in the camp with his friends and neighbours from Daraa from where they fled. Eslam goes to the camp’s school in the mornings and by noon he begins his daily football match. His team includes both girls and boys.

 



Photo: WFP/Reem Nada

 Photo four:

Cameroon, Lolo, 29 May 2014

 



Almost 90,000 people have fled across the border between C.A.R. and Cameroon since December 2013.
Up to 2,000 people a week, mostly women and children, reach Cameroon through more than 30 entry points along a 700-kilometre stretch of border. Acute malnutrition rates among refugees are between 20 and 30 percent according to WFP and UNHCR screening, well above the emergency threshold of 15 percent.

“Women and children are arriving in Cameroon in a shocking state, after weeks, sometimes months, on the road, foraging for food. This is the most recent tragedy resulting from the escalating bloodshed that has torn C.A.R. apart. We must all act now or more children will needlessly suffer.  We must intervene to save lives and prevent a worsening situation, ” said Cousin. “After they finally escape the danger they faced in C.A.R., children and women who flee  must not die from malnutrition” she added.
WFP has provided 30-day general food rations to 44,700 refugees and stateless people since 22 May.  In response to the grim condition of many new arrivals from C.A.R., WFP began in early May distributing specialized nutritious food at some entry points and refugee sites. Distribution of highly nutritious food to all children under five is underway at Borgop Lolo, Mbile, Gado Ghiti and Kenzu in Cameroon. All pregnant women and new mothers are receiving fortified porridge.

The second of two WFP-chartered aircraft – with a total of 127 metric tons of WFP high energy biscuits and ready-to-eat especially nutritious foods – has arrived in Cameroon today from the UN’s humanitarian hub in Dubai. The first plane arrived in Cameroon on Sunday.
The 90,000 people who have fled into Cameroon are spread over more than 300 sites across 50,000 square kilometres in the East and Adamawa regions. The logistical challenge of reaching them is compounded  by rains and poor roads, which mean that conditions in camps and host settlements are bound to deteriorate.
More than 226,000 refugees and third country nationals have fled violence in C.A.R. since September. Of the refugees 86,068 are in Cameroon, 14,000 in Chad, 14,141 in Democratic Republic of the Congo, and 8,891 in Republic of Congo. All of them are in need humanitarian assistance.
WFP’s operations to help feed the hundreds of thousands or people who have fled C.A.R. to four surrounding countries have an average shortfall of 70 percent or more.

In the Photo: Lolo refugees’ site.  Children start playing again after weeks or months of a terrible journey in the bush to escape violence in CAR.



 

Photo: WFP/Sylvain Cherkaoui

 

 

WFP Delivers Food to Conflict-Affected Areas of Northern Mali

In mid-May, a surge in violence in the north of Mali, particularly in the region of Kidal, led to the temporary displacement of thousands of people; further complicating an already difficult situation for vulnerable people in the area.

In spite of ongoing hostilities and the fact that NGOs have been pulling staff from the region, WFP has continued to get food and nutritional support to vulnerable people in Gao and Kidal every month since March of 2013 –and continues to do so today.

With the approach of the lean season, WFP had already planned to increase distributions in the Kidal region. Following the recent clashes, WFP further increased its caseload to account for 4,000 displaced people and is now delivering provisions to 31,000 people, up from 20,000 in April.

WFP-Mali’s Emergency Operation, which provides food and nutritional support to the most vulnerable and conflict-affected people in Mali’s North, is facing a significant funding shortfall. At just one-third funded, WFP was forced to make the difficult choice to cut food rations in order to reach as many people as possible.

Thanks to generous contributions from donors, as of June, 2014, WFP has been able to raise rations back to normal levels in time for the lean season.

Photos: WFP/Daouda Guirou 

Without further funding, this situation will not be sustainable for long. 

Cameroon, May 2014

Almost 90,000 people have fled across the border between C.A.R. and Cameroon since December 2013.
Up to 2,000 people a week, mostly women and children, reach Cameroon through more than 30 entry points along a 700-kilometre stretch of border. Acute malnutrition rates among refugees are between 20 and 30 percent according to WFP and UNHCR screening, well above the emergency threshold of 15 percent.

“Women and children are arriving in Cameroon in a shocking state, after weeks, sometimes months, on the road, foraging for food. This is the most recent tragedy resulting from the escalating bloodshed that has torn C.A.R. apart. We must all act now or more children will needlessly suffer.  We must intervene to save lives and prevent a worsening situation, ” said Cousin. “After they finally escape the danger they faced in C.A.R., children and women who flee  must not die from malnutrition” she added.
WFP has provided 30-day general food rations to 44,700 refugees and stateless people since 22 May.  In response to the grim condition of many new arrivals from C.A.R., WFP began in early May distributing specialized nutritious food at some entry points and refugee sites. Distribution of highly nutritious food to all children under five is underway at Borgop Lolo, Mbile, Gado Ghiti and Kenzu in Cameroon. All pregnant women and new mothers are receiving fortified porridge.

The second of two WFP-chartered aircraft – with a total of 127 metric tons of WFP high energy biscuits and ready-to-eat especially nutritious foods – has arrived in Cameroon today from the UN’s humanitarian hub in Dubai. The first plane arrived in Cameroon on Sunday.
The 90,000 people who have fled into Cameroon are spread over more than 300 sites across 50,000 square kilometres in the East and Adamawa regions. The logistical challenge of reaching them is compounded  by rains and poor roads, which mean that conditions in camps and host settlements are bound to deteriorate.
More than 226,000 refugees and third country nationals have fled violence in C.A.R. since September. Of the refugees 86,068 are in Cameroon, 14,000 in Chad, 14,141 in Democratic Republic of the Congo, and 8,891 in Republic of Congo. All of them are in need humanitarian assistance.
WFP’s operations to help feed the hundreds of thousands or people who have fled C.A.R. to four surrounding countries have an average shortfall of 70 percent or more.

In the Photos: WFP is distributing food rations for a month and provide plumpy sup and super cereal to children and nursing women. Super cereals will be distributed with the next GFD.
Families staying at Gbiti refugees site are receiving food rations for a months. Super cereal to prevent malnutrition will be included in next distributions.

Photos: WFP/Sylvain Cherkaoui

WFP’s HIV programme in Ethiopia

 People living with HIV can enjoy healthy and productive lives. Zero percent mother-to-child transmission is possible. For this to happen good nutrition is an essential but often overlooked factor.

WFP’s programme to improve access to HIV care, treatment & support in urban areas has been reaching out to people living with HIV in nearly 80 towns and cities across the country. Recognizing and addressing the well-proven but often overlooked link between HIV and nutrition is essential in any efforts to treat the disease. With the right nutrition and antiretroviral treatment, people who were once bedridden can become breadwinners. Similarly, zero mother-to-child transmission is possible by following the same regime. Over the years, WFP’s HIV programme has been increasing its reach and sophistication, as well as providing assistance through food distributions. Vouchers were introduced in 2012, and the programme began its first cash distributions last year. By allowing beneficiaries to buy fresh foods, cash and vouchers help to improve the diversity of their diets, and boost local economies. They also cut the travel time and cost of reaching distribution sites.

WFP also offers nutritional counseling and support to those enrolled, along with training on setting up small businesses, so people have more money to spend on nutritious food, thus improving the effectiveness of their treatment.

This programme also targets vulnerable children, including those orphaned by AIDS, as part of a wider government effort to ensure they are protected and remain in school. In 2013 WFP provided food rations to 57,000 of the most vulnerable children via their guardians or grandparents.

 In the photos: From bedridden to breadwinner Alemitu Wolde preferred an individual business activity. Living on a busy street she borrowed money to turn the front of her family’s small house into a tiny grocery store. She hopes her grandson Yesera will become a doctor one day.

Overall, more than 6,500 people in 322 groups across Ethiopia participate in these savings and business projects. Assessments last year showed 70 percent of them now have acceptable food consumption scores.

Photos: WFP/Chris Terry