Sahel

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WFP Struggles Under Financial Weight of Food Crises | 

Displaced families in CAR carry 25 kg bags of maize, distributed by WFP.
Displaced families in CAR carry 25 kg bags of maize, distributed by WFP.
WFP

Funding shortages have led the World Food Programme to announce cuts to food rations in countries including Haiti, Kenya, Mali and Niger. The UN organization says it needs an extra $1 billion to meet the food needs of people around the world.

The need for food aid has increased in Syria, the Central African Republic (CAR) and across the Sahel have increased over the past few months. However, the agency has struggled to gain access to and meet the demand for some of the most desperate people in Syria and the CAR.

A new appeal to assist an estimated 20 million people across the Sahel region of West Africa requires $2 billion. The arid belt is particularly vulnerable to drought, leading to higher rates of food insecurity and malnutrition.

More than half of the money, $1.115 billion, is intended to address food security and nutrition. The appeal estimated that 5 million children are affected by acute malnutrition, with 1.5 million of that number suffering from severe acute malnutrition.

The World Food Programme (WFP) will work alongside other UN agencies to address the problems faced by people living in the Sahel. More money is needed to ensure that the UN can undertake an appropriate response. Only 60% of the $1.72 billion UN appeal for the Sahel was fulfilled last year.

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World Bank President Leads Charge Against Climate Change | 

Jim Kim
Jim Kim
World Bank

The World Bank unveiled its plan to end extreme poverty by 2030 recently.

The rapid progress of India, China and Brazil blazed the path towards exceeding the global Millennium Development Goal of halving poverty by 2015. Now the Bank wants to rid the world of extreme poverty forever.

Ending extreme poverty will require the acceleration of economic growth in developing countries and translating that growth into jobs while eliminating inequality, said World Bank President Jim Kim in a blogger call yesterday morning. Work must be done to mitigate the shocks caused by natural disasters and eliminate the insecurity linked to food, fuel and poverty, he added.

Linking all of these problems, for Kim, is climate change.

“Climate change is not just an environmental challenge. It’s a fundamental threat to economic development and the fight against poverty,” he said. Continue reading

Will the next Africa hunger crisis be prevented? | 

There is a looming food crisis in the Sahel, a geographic ‘belt’ that stretches across central Africa from the Atlantic Ocean to the Red Sea.

After the hand-wringing and finger-pointing following the famine in East Africa last year, you would think the international community would already be mobilizing to prevent a similar tragedy from unfolding again right before our eyes.

The Guardian

As The Guardian reports:

More than 13 million people are at risk of hunger in the Sahel, with more than 10 million now considered food-insecure. More than 1 million children are at risk of severe malnutrition.

BBC Oxfam warns of catastrophe