Due to a lack of funding, WFP has had to suspend assistance to one third of its caseload – nearly 200,000 children in kindergarten who were receiving nutritional assistance. This comes on top of an earlier one-third cut to rations since February. WFP’s operations focus on the nutritional needs of pregnant women, nursing mothers and young children. The agency needs urgent funding to keep operations going through the harsh winter.
WFP urgently requires $26m to continue providing food and nutrition assistance through to April 2018. A major break in funding is looming from January 2018 affecting WFP’s major programmes including relief assistance for internally displaced persons in Rakhine, Kachin and Shan states; nutrition support for pregnant and nursing women, adolescent girls and young malnourished children; and school feeding.
WFP requires $4.2m over a three-year period to implement a mother-and child health and nutrition programme to prevent chronic malnutrition among expectant mothers and children aged 6 to 23 months in the isolated Karnali region. More than half the population of this area are malnourished.
Seven years of war have trapped most Syrians in a vicious cycle of poverty and hunger. An estimated 6.5m people in Syria are facing severe hunger, with 4m at high risk of food insecurity. Their already-difficult situation is exacerbated by the violence, displacement, unemployment, and a drastic devaluation of the Syrian pound. WFP is providing monthly food assistance to 3.3m people, down from 4m in November. A shortage of funds means numbers will be further reduced to 2.8m in January 201
8. WFP requires $158m immediately to continue life-saving programmes.
Since the 2011 uprising, major food shortages in conflict areas have hindered families’ access to food. Due to limited port access and road blockages, food imports into Libya have dwindled, causing food prices to skyrocket – in some cases by as much as 200% compared to pre-conflict levels. WFP aims to provide food to 175,000 vulnerable people affected by conflict, mainly families, returnees and refugees.
After two-and-a-half years of conflict Yemen is on the brink of famine with nearly 18m people – two in three Yemenis – not knowing where their next meal is coming from. Eight million of them are totally dependent on food assistance. WFP has more than doubled the number of people it reaches every month, from 3.5m in January to an average of 7m people since August. WFP is only able to provide a full monthly ration to half of them – the rest receive just 60% of the food they need. WFP is only 48%
funded over the next six months.
Food insecurity is driven by high unemployment and people’s limited ability to purchase food. With just under a quarter of the Palestinian population – or 1.3m people – require food assistance. Based on projections of donor contributions, WFP has had to reduce the number of people it supports through food rations and electronic food vouchers to 314,000 across Gaza and the West Bank compared with half a million people from 2015-2017.
WFP urgently requires $153m to provide assistance to over 3.1m acutely food insecure people as the country braces itself for another poor lean season. More than half a million Somali people will no longer receive critical life-saving food assistance from WFP in December and, unless new funding is received, an extra 1.5m vulnerable people may not receive assistance in the following months.
WFP operations are aimed at refugees. In October WFP was able to increase its rations to 80% of the refugees’ entitlement (up from 73% in July 2017). However, given the consistent flow of arrivals largely from South Sudan, more resources are urgently needed. Approximately 650,000 refugees are dependent on WFP. If additional funding is not secured, WFP will be forced to consider further ration cuts from April 2018.
WFP aimed to provide food assistance to 780,000 drought-affected children and women. So far, it has reached only half of them due to a lack of funds. In some counties WFP has not been able to deliver any assistance despite acute malnutrition levels among children under the age of five of 20 to 30% – up to twice the emergency threshold. Meanwhile, starting in November, WFP has been forced to reduce food rations to 420,000 refugees living in camps in northern Kenya by 30%. Currently, WFP has a shortfall of $24.6m to cover its refugee operation to the end of May 2018.
A lack of funding meant that WFP earlier this year had to stop providing food or cash in return for community resilience-building work during the lean season in Uganda’s northeastern region of Karamoja. WFP is seeking a total of US$7.8m to revive and expand the cash-for-assets project in 2018 for a total of 200,000 people in arid Karamoja.
WFP feeds or provides cash assistance to 130,000 Burundian and Congolese refugees. In November it cut rations and cash aid for the first time since 2012 by 10%. WFP will need to increase the cuts to 25% in January and February if no new funding arrives.
Conflict-related food insecurity has deteriorated alarmingly this year. There are 3.2m people in need in the Kasai region alone. The number of children suffering severe acute malnutrition stands at 1.9m, exceeding those of Yemen, Somalia, South Sudan and Nigeria combined. But WFP funding is inadequate, constraining the agency’s ability to deliver in areas with long-standing food security issues as well as in new battlegrounds. WFP’s Kasai emergency operation, launched in August and designed to reach 500,000 of the most vulnerable by the end of December, has been financed mostly by internal borrowings and advances.
Two years after the Ebola outbreak, Guinea is still recovering. In this context, WFP provided nearly 300,000 children with hot, nutritious school meals every school day during 2016/17. School meals work as an incentive for parents to send their children to school while relieving hunger and malnutrition, which then enhances the ability of the children to learn.
WFP’s operation to provide food assistance to vulnerable, conflict-affected people in the eastern part of Ukraine will continue until the end of February 2018 and will then come to an end. During this period, people will continue to receive vouchers or cash to enable them to buy food in their local markets. Falling funding and access problems has made it difficult for WFP to maintain its operation.