The latest donation to assist the war-ravaged people of the Democratic Republic of Congo comes from the Government of Greece, which last year increased its contributions to a record € 3.3 million (US$4.2 million) to WFP to fight global hunger.
Greece’s total contributions during 2006 are its largest ever to WFP.
James Morris, WFP Executive Director
Greece’s donation of €500,000 (US$658,762) for WFP’s relief and recovery operation in DRC is part of a €1.5 million contribution for the people of Sri Lanka and the Horn of Africa and to increase awareness of WFP’s work in Greece.
“On behalf of all those Congolese who are still suffering from the aftermath of years of war and unrest, WFP is very grateful to the Government of Greece for this contribution,” said Charles Vincent, WFP Country Director in DRC.
“Following the elections, it is especially timely as the country struggles to build itself a secure future.”
The donation comes as WFP faces severe funding difficulties in DRC: “We must feed people who are cut off by insecurity, but also work to open up access to remote areas, using local infrastructure to reach those needing food aid – faster and at a lower cost,” said Vincent.
WFP still faces a shortfall of €11.5 million (US$15 million) to cover needs until the end of June 2007. This means half rations – or in some cases no food at all – for most of the 1 million affected people WFP is targeting from January 2007 to June 2007.
“When we do not have the funds, we cannot help the poor survivors of conflicts and natural disasters. Greece’s total contributions during 2006 are its largest ever to WFP – and a sign of the government’s commitment to work more closely with the United Nations, and with WFP in particular, so that we can reach people quickly and effectively,” said James Morris, WFP Executive Director.