The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) has welcomed a €500,000 (US$ 610,000) contribution from the Italian Government to provide food to people affected by the drought in Zambia.
Drought and prolonged dry spells have left 2.3 million people severely food insecure and in need of humanitarian food assistance.
“In the context of the current crisis, the Italian emergency contribution confirmed in December 2019 is crucial to WFP. The funds will enable WFP to procure around 340 MT of pulses to cover the food needs of about 99,000 people for an entire month, helping WFP ensure that the people residing in the areas most affected by the drought can receive the immediate assistance they need,” said Jennifer Bitonde, WFP Country Representative in Zambia.
“At the same time, WFP will continue to work to strengthening communities’ resilience to future climatic shocks under its five-year Country Strategic Plan (2019-2024),” she added.
As part of the 2019 Humanitarian Response Plan, WFP is currently supporting the Government’s response by providing logistics support by delivering Government-supplied maize meal, as well as by procuring and delivering pulses to ensure a nutrition-sensitive food basket.
WFP is also working closely with partners to monitor food distributions and guarantee that resources reach those most in need.
About 1.1 million people are expected to receive WFP’s support, while the remaining 1.2 million will be assisted by the Government and other partners, with whom WFP is working and closely coordinating.
Meanwhile, the United States through its US Agency for International Development has also made a contribution of USD 3.39 million to the United Nations World Food Programme.
The objective of this contribution is to meet the immediate food requirements of drought-affected people in Zambia.
The support from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) comes at a moment of increasing needs, after drought and prolonged dry spells have left 2.3 million people severely food insecure and in need of assistance.
Through this funding, World Food Programme (WFP) will deliver 2,380 MT of pulses to complement the Government’s maize for three months, giving 255,000 drought-affected people across the country the food and nutritional assistance they need.
“WFP requires USD 36 million to effectively support the Government in responding to the crisis. USAID’s contribution represents approximately 10 percent of the total needs and will allow WFP to ensure that drought-affected people will not go to bed hungry during this year’s lean season,” WFP’s Country Representative in Zambia, Jennifer Bitonde opined.