via Zim gets $8,1m food aid emergency fund – NewsDay Zimbabwe November 20, 2015
THE United Nations Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) has announced the allocation of $8,1 million to Zimbabwe for immediate food aid amid indications that the predicted El Niño will likely result in a poor rainy season.
BY STAFF REPORTER
The allocated emergency funds will be used to support some of the worst affected communities that remain uncovered by current food aid responses.
According to the 2015 Zimbabwe Vulnerability Assessment Committee (supported by government, UN, donors and NGOs), an estimated 924 000 people were currently food insecure and the figure is expected to increase to 1,5 million between January and March 2016 next year.
UN resident co-ordinator and UNDP Resident Representative, Bishow Parajuli, said communities hit by food insecurity would be assisted.
“The UN support will focus on responding to urgent needs of the food insecure population, with building community resilience as an integral component of the response, especially considering a predicted El Niño, which could mean another poor rainfall season,” he said.
The CERF allocation will be broken down as $4,3m for food assistance, $2,1m to ensure affected farmers access crop inputs and survival stock feed, $1,2m for the restoration of access to safe water and improvement of hygiene practices and over half a million dollars for lifesaving nutrition interventions.
Unicef representative, Reza Hossaini said the funding would go a long way in alleviating hardships in women and children, who usually bear the brunt of hardships caused by drought.
“With this funding, we and our partners will do our utmost to alleviate these hardships by providing affected communities with safe water, treatments for children with diarrhoea and severe acute malnutrition and critical lifesaving information for preventing diseases such as cholera and diarrhoea,” he said.
The overall food insecurity response plan was developed by the government, UN, humanitarian and development partners, among other stakeholders, following a call for support by Vice-President Emerson Mnangagwa who chairs Cabinet Committee on Food and Nutrition Security.
The plan seeks $132,2m, of which $54,1m has been received thus far, leaving a funding gap of $78,1m.