Russian wheat shipment will feed Sudan school children

Published on 23 April 2007

WFP welcomes the arrival at Port Sudan of a US$2 million shipment of wheat from Russia to support the agency’s recovery and development operations in Sudan.

WFP welcomed today the arrival at this Red Sea port of a US$2 million shipment of wheat from Russia to support the agency’s recovery and development operations in Sudan.

This Russian donation is vital to the future of thousands of Sudanese children

Kenro Oshidari, WFP Sudan

The wheat, totalling 4,205 metric tons, will be used to feed 284,500 children enrolled in WFP's school feeding programmes in the chronically food insecure states of Kassala, Red Sea and North Kordofan as well as 6,000 participants in food-for- work projects.

Vital donation

"This Russian donation is vital to the future of thousands of Sudanese children,” said Kenro Oshidari, WFP Regional Director in Sudan.

“When children get a hot meal at school, they are better able to concentrate and retain information. We are especially pleased that absenteeism among girls in our programme is almost zero at schools where hot meals are served."

Boost

WFP’s recovery and development operations, gathered in a Country Programme, provided food assistance last year to about 275,000 children at 1,347 schools.

The aid helped boost overall enrollment by 24 per cent in 2006 and raise attendance rates to 91 per cent, up from 86 per cent the previous year. Among nomadic girls, attendance was close to 100 per cent.

Food for Work

Under food-for-work programmes, participants receive food rations in return for work on community development projects, including the construction of water collection ponds, school classrooms, pit latrines, tree plantations and the use of improved household cooking stoves.

The wheat shipment that arrived at Port Sudan is part of a total US$11 million Russian Federation donation pledged to WFP last year. Since 2004, Russia has donated a total of US$33 million to WFP.

WFP’s three-year, US$66-million Country Programme is separate from the agency’s much larger emergency operation in Sudan, which this year expects to reach 5.5 million people with 682,000 metric tons of food at a total cost of US$685 million.