ECHO Contribution Fights Malnutrition Among Women, Children in Northern Kenya

Published on 08 December 2009

NAIROBI – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) said today €7.5 million ($US11.3 million) from the European Commission’s Humanitarian Aid department (ECHO) would be used to address high levels of malnutrition among children, pregnant and nursing mothers in Kenya’s arid North.

“Through this generous and timely ECHO contribution, WFP will provide special supplementary rations to 450,000 children under the age of five, and to pregnant and nursing mothers in Turkana, Samburu, Wajir, Marsabit and Mandera districts,” said Burkard Oberle, WFP Country Director.

“Children under five are always hit hardest by a crisis and suffer the most,” he said. “Given the high levels of malnutrition in these five districts, this additional support will effectively help curb malnutrition levels.”

A recent nutrition survey found high malnutrition levels among people in the districts – above the 15 percent emergency threshold. To reduce these levels, WFP will feed all children below the age of five and all pregnant and nursing mothers from December for four months in the districts.

The supplementary food of fortified corn-soya blend and vegetable oil will complement  general WFP food distributions in Kenya because of drought and persistent high food prices.

ECHO has continued to support WFP efforts to fight hunger in Kenya and earlier this year provided a $US4.4 million donation to feed refugees in camps in the Northwest and Northeast.


For further information:
Rose Ogola, WFP/Nairobi, Tel. +254 207 622 301, Mob. +254 733 501 906