Hunger in the news

6 September 2009

In Gaza, during the first school session of 2009, the WFP program reached 50,950 children in 90 selected primary schools. Biscuits and milk were provided as well as take-home rations. WFP officer Ancel Kats states, "the programme supports the Ministry of Education and Higher Education (MoEHE) and its main objective is to maintain the enrolment of boys and girls in assisted schools at pre-crisis levels."

31 August 2009

Ramadan 9..) is bleak in Gaza because basic and traditional foodstuffs are unavailable due to the Israeli blockade, or out of reach due to soaring prices and poverty (..). "The level of poverty and unemployment is so high, people cannot afford to pay the prices," said UN World Food Programme (WFP) officer Jeannoel Gentile in Gaza.

8 July 2009

Summer Games organized by the UN agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA) at 152 camp locations throughout the Gaza Strip are helping many children get over the trauma of the 23-day Israeli offensive which ended on 18 January 2009. (..) Some 50,000 people in Gaza still have serious accommodation problems in the wake of the offensive, according to a recent report published by the Logistics Cluster, led by the UN World Food Programme.

5 July 2009

In the immediate aftermath of Israel's bloody three-week war with Hamas in January, Peter Beaumont travelled to Gaza and met the Palestinians devasted by the death of their families and the destruction of their neighbourhoods. (..) These days, pigeons and sparrows nest in the cave-like space carved out by the detonation inside the ruins where mattresses and bags of flour are stored, the latter stencilled with the initials of the World Food Programme.

2 July 2009

The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) welcomed a donation of US$50,000 from the Mexican International Cooperation Fund for Development to support WFP operation lifeline Gaza. (..) The contribution will help WFP provide urgently needed food assistance to 365,000 civilians in Gaza, including 50,000 schoolchildren in some 85 schools. WFP is also planning to start a food voucher operation in Gaza which will enable thousands of Palestinians to access food directly from small and medium-sized traders in Gaza.

3 June 2009

The only working warehouse in Al-Arish had been part-rented to the World Food Programme (WFP) with only some of its space allocated to the Egyptian Red Crescent Society (ERCS), said Ahmed Orabi, head of Egyptian Red Crescent aid operations between June 2008 and April 2009. Not all of the donated food aid arriving in Al-Arish could be stored appropriately, and this had led to some wastage, he said. (...) Bekim Mahmuti, head of logistics with WFP's programme in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, told IRIN they had encountered no warehousing or access problems in Al-Arish. "Our aid was locally purchased in Egypt and stockpiled in our warehouse in Al-Arish. It successfully reached Gaza," Mahmuti said from East Jerusalem. He added that WFP had no food aid left in Al-Arish by mid-May.

29 April 2009

With May Day approaching, the unemployment in the besieged Gaza Strip has climbed to 44.8%, according to the local Chamber of Commerce. A report by Mahir At-Tabba, director of public relations at the Chamber of Commerce in Gaza City assessed that 85% of the population in the Gaza Strip are dependent on humanitarian aid offered by UNRWA, the World Food Program, and other organizations.

29 April 2009

The hundreds of subterranean passages that have fuelled Gaza's economy since its borders were hermetically sealed by Israel and Egypt in 2007 were one of the primary targets of Israel's three-week Operation Cast Lead. Now largely rebuilt in the wake of a war that destroyed much of the strip's infrastructure and agricultural land, the tunnels that provide Gaza with food, fuel, medicine and other consumer goods may have become even more crucial as an economic lifeline, the World Food Programme (WFP) says.

21 April 2009

Rising poverty, unemployment and food insecurity in Gaza, compounded by the recent 23-day Israeli offensive, have increased the threat of child malnutrition, say UN agencies, health ministry officials and healthcare NGOs in Gaza. UN World Health Organization (WHO) officials are concerned by the warning signs, including rising malnutrition indicators - like increased cases of stunting, wasting and underweight children - and continuing high rates of anaemia among children and pregnant women. A Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)/World Food Programme (WFP) qualitative food security assessment for Gaza in 2008 and early 2009 points to increasing food insecurity compared to 2007, said FAO food security adviser Erminio Saco based in Jerusalem; and according to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS) food acquisition and energy consumption in Gaza declined by 10 percent between 2005 and 2007.

6 April 2009

United Nations has announced a year long food voucher scheme for around 30,000 Palestinians through their World Food Programme (WFP). Under the programme, developed together with the Palestinian Authority, families will receive eight vouchers per month, with a monthly value of $50, which they can use to buy items such as bread, eggs and milk. WFP Country Director in the occupied Palestinian territories Christine van Nieuwenhuyse said "The recent fall in global food prices has not yet translated into lower prices in local markets". "Palestinian families are now spending about 60 per cent of their income on food," she stated, adding that the new project would improve people's access to food, while also providing a financial stimulus to the local economy.