World Food Programme appeals for $41m for Central African Republic

21 Jan 16

At least $41m is needed to help half of the population of the Central African Republic – amounting to 2.5 million people – who are facing hunger, the World Food Programme has warned.

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World Food Programme aid
World Food Programme high-energy biscuit delivery. Credit: UN Photo/Logan Abassi

 

The WFP’s emergency food security assessment into CAR found that the number of hungry people in the country has doubled in one year as conflict and insecurity have led to limited access and availability of food.

“This is not the usual run-of-the-mill emergency,” said Guy Adoua, WFP deputy country director in CAR.

“People are left with nothing. Three years of crisis have taken a huge toll on the people of CAR. Families have been forced too often to sell what they own, pull their kids out of school, even resort to begging, that they have reached the end of their rope.

He said the WFP is “extremely concerned” by the “alarming” levels of hunger, with food that is available often lacking in sustenance and not meeting nutritional needs.

The WFP said it will need $41m to respond to urgent needs through to the end of June. Its current interventions in the country focus on cash-based transfers and local food purchases for school meals, but the emergency assessment’s recommendations also include continued emergency food assistance and food and technical assistance to farmers.

Civil war broke out in CAR in 2012, after rebels accused the government of failing to abide by earlier peace agreements, signed in 2007 and 2011.

As well as three years of conflict, the UN assessment found that the country’s 2014-2015 harvests were poor and food prices remained high as farmers were reluctant to tend their fields due to insecurity. Nearly 1 million people are displaced inside CAR or are in other countries seeking refuge.

Earlier this week the WFP also voiced concerns about the consequences of a lack of funds for more than 23,000 refugees at a camp in Malawi, where it has had to reduce rations and suspend provision of foodstuffs during the last six months. The WFP appealed for $2m for the next year. 

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