Hunger in the news

25 June 2013

Like many other Syrians, Fatima has escaped the violence in her country, and now she, her husband and four children are among the close to half a million Syrians that have taken refuge in Jordan. (..) The humanitarian crisis has put Syria at the center of donor attention, with humanitarian aid pouring for the displaced inside and outside the country. WFP has to raise $26 million every week to meet the food needs of people affected by the conflict, said the World Food Program’s Laure Chadraoui.

17 June 2013

In the best of times, the solitary well that services this parched border town produced only enough water to let each household run its taps for a few hours a week. That was before civil war broke out in Syria, and before 180,000 thirsty refugees took up residence in a vast city of tents and trailers next door. (..) U.N. relief organizations provide food and shelter for many of the newcomers, but it has fallen mainly to Jordan to supply water for the camps as well as for the legions of Syrians who have taken shelter in Jordanian border towns and in Amman, the capital.

17 June 2013

The leaders of the G8 nations are to begin a summit in Northern Ireland, with Syria's conflict set to dominate. (..) The 39th Summit of the Group Of Eight (G8) will be held in Lough Erne, County Fermanagh, on Monday and Tuesday.

13 June 2013

The livelihoods of dozens of farmers just outside this small village, in a remote area of Lebanon’s Beka’a Valley near the Syrian border, hang in the balance. Local farmers say many in the no-man’s land between the Syrian and Lebanese frontier posts, known as Mashari El Qaa, have abandoned their farms in recent months, in some cases leaving their equipment and running when they see Syrian rebels approaching. Others have stopped planting because of landmines or reduced their visits to their fields. (..) A recent assessment by FAO of the impact of the Syrian crisis on food security and agricultural livelihoods in neighbouring countries found that it has become extremely difficult for Lebanese farmers to sustain their livelihoods.

11 June 2013

Head of WFP sub-office in Bekaa, Ingolfur Palsson, explained the problems. "Every month we have 50,000 people crossing the border to Lebanon coming from Syria. And every month we are increasing our capacity to meet the needs of these people. For us, food is the highest priority for these people at the moment. We're able to cope, but it's getting more and more difficult," he said. To help the local economy, WFP issues food vouchers to refugees once they are registered.

11 June 2013

June 7 - The United Nations issued the biggest financing appeal in its history on Friday, asking for more than $5 billion in humanitarian aid for Syria this year to help millions of people affected by the country’s civil war and ease the pressure building up in neighboring countries overwhelmed by Syrian refugees. (..) “We have reached a stage in Syria where some of the people, if they do not get food from the World Food Program, they simply do not eat,” Muhannad Hadi, the program’s emergency coordinator in Syria, told reporters in Geneva. “If mothers do not get food on the promised day that we deliver food,” Mr. Hadi said, “then there is nothing for them to cook for their children. Their children will go to bed on an empty stomach.”

7 June 2013

The U.N. World Food Programme (WFP), which has delivered 500 million meals in Syria so far this year, expects its weekly costs to rise from almost $20 million now to $36 million after September. It says it has a funding shortfall of about $725 million. "These are huge numbers. They're not sustainable over the very long term," said WFP Deputy Executive Director Amir Abdulla.

5 June 2013

Should we keep a school open, or not; should the health centre shut its doors, or not. These are just some of the questions the dedicated staff members of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) have to answer on a daily basis as they carry out their work in embattled Syria. (..) The conflict has led the Agency to explore new and more creative ways to distribute its assistance. (..) Staff members also send refugees text messages informing them of the timing and locations of ATM card and food distributions, and cooperate with other partners such as the World Food Programme (WFP) to deliver food assistance in areas experiencing armed violence.

3 June 2013

Building the Burj Khalifa was a feat that took five years, but Jordanian bakers catering to Syrian refugees that have flooded the region are reaching three times that height — every day. (..) The approximately 500,000 pieces of khobz bread that are dished out each day to the more than 100,000 Syrian refugees who live in what is said to be the second largest refugee camp in the world, the Zaatari Syrian Refugee Camp, would sit somewhere in the order of 2,500 metres if piled on top of each other, according to the World Food Programme.

3 June 2013

Pressure from aid agencies, the UN and the media over the [funding] shortfall appears to have now produced a dramatic turnaround. (..) But the growing numbers still fleeing Syria – and new camps already operating at breaking point – mean new appeals by the UNHCR and the World Food Programme are already being worked on. Aid is urgently needed as the situation, both for those inside the camps and for those trying to reach them, seems to be deteriorating. Thousands of refugees stranded near the closed border with Jordan are running out of food and many need medical treatment, aid workers and refugees said a few days ago.