WFP provides food assistance in Nepal through three sub-offices with three major projects: The Country Programme (DEV 200319), Social Protection Livelihoods and assets creation programme (PRRO 200152), and the refugee operation (PRRO 200136). In January 2013, WFP started a new five-year Country Programme through actively supporting the Government of Nepal in tackling food insecurity, focusing on social safety nets in the areas of nutrition, education and rural livelihoods support. The interventions concentrate on the most vulnerable populations in the mid- and far-western hills and mountain regions where the most food-insecure people live. Social protection is the overarching theme of this new programme, which consists of four distinct components:
Investing in the health of pregnant and lactating women, young mothers and children under five preempts a reduction in human capital and productivity. Under its new Country Programme, WFP will build on 10 years of experience with nutrition interventions in Nepal. WFP’s nutrition activities have three objectives: 1) prevention of undernutrition in children between 6-23 months, pregnant and lactating women through WFP’s Mother-and-Child-Health and Nutrition Programme; 2) treatment of moderate acute malnutrition in children between 6-59 months through a Community-based Management of Acute Malnutrition programme; and 3) capacity building activities including nutrition policy support and efforts to increase local production of special fortified food supplements. In total, about 110,000 mothers and children could benefit yearly from these activities, provided WFP receives sufficient funding. Total cost for the planned nutrition interventions amount to about US$9 million annually.
2) School Meals:
WFP is currently successfully implementing a School Meals programme together with the Ministry of Education. The objective of this programme is twofold. In the short term, the programme aims to keep children in school as well as to enhance their attention through provision of a nutritious school meal. In the long term, the programme aims to break the cycle of hunger by promoting education, in particular of the women. To improve access to quality education, WFP has also partnered with Open Learning Exchange Nepal to provide digital learning materials to rural primary schools. WFP started activities together with the Ministry of Education (MoE) in 1996. At the central level, WFP and MoE signed an operational agreement formalizing the partnership, which will be extended under this new Country Programme.
WFP will provide children in grade 1-8 in schools of selected districts with a bowl of haluwa, a nutritious porridge-like meal. The food, consisting of a fortified wheat-soya blend with sugar and vegetable oil, will be cooked at the schools. Children will receive this support each school day. In 2013, up to 330,000 children could benefit from this. WFP needs US$12 million annually to cover the food costs for this programme.
3) Productive Assets and Livelihoods Support:
To address the severe food security situation in the mid- and far-western hills and mountains, WFP implements schemes to provide employment opportunities to create protective and productive assets and restore and rebuild livelihoods in the exchange of food, cash or a combination of food and cash. The projects aim at: 1) enhancing agricultural production; 2) creating rural infrastructure for poor and disenfranchised rural communities; and 3) helping communities to build resilience against weather shocks in adaptation to changing climatic conditions. Up to 410,000 vulnerable persons will directly benefit from WFP's food and cash transfers, if sufficient funding is received.
The participants will directly benefit from food and cash transfers, and many more will benefit from the assets created. WFP’s livelihoods and assets creation projects aimed at: 1) enhancing agricultural production; 2) creating rural infrastructure for poor and disenfranchised rural communities; and 3) helping communities to build resilience against weather shocks in adaptation to changing climatic conditions. Up to 410,000 vulnerable people will directly benefit from WFP’s livelihoods support projects at a cost of US$25 million annually. In the design and implementation of individual projects, WFP builds on its vast experience as the organization has carried out similar projects since 1996. WFP’s proven track record of successfully handing over projects to the communities and to the Government of Nepal will serve as a blue print for future activities. Already during the project design phase WFP considers how the project can later be transferred to communities and to the Government, thus making project sustainability the focus of its efforts. These activities are currently done under the PRRO 200152 which is extended until June 2013.
4) Capacity Development of WFP's partners:
WFP operates in 20 of Nepal's 75 districts. More than 30 vulnerability analysis and mapping (VAM) staff cover 75 districts and collect real-time data on household food security. With this data, the VAM unit, in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture Development, produces critical reports on food prices, household food security and early warning of emergency situations for key stakeholders and donors in Nepal. Please visit http://groups.google.com/group/NeKSAP?hl=en&pli=1 for more food security monitoring data and reports. In addition, WFP will do capacity building activities of the Government including nutrition policy support and efforts to increase local production of special fortified food supplements. WFP will support the Ministry of Education in developing its national school feeding strategy, to ensure linkages and harmonized objectives, targeting criteria and nutrition provisions between school meal programmes and other health and nutrition interventions under the multi-sectoral nutrition plan.