KAMPALA –The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) is distributing relief food to help vulnerable households in the Karamoja region cope with the hardship of the hunger season, the period between planting in March/April and September/October when harvesting begins.
WFP Country Director Sory Ouane said today that distributions started in May in all seven districts, targeting children, elderly, disabled and chronically ill people. He said WFP expected to reach an estimated 155,000 people by the end of the hunger season, with the help of generous donors such as the United States.
“Unlike other parts of Uganda, which have two planting seasons in a year, Karamoja has only one,” Ouane said. “By around April and May, some households begin to run out of food. Each year, WFP plays an important role by filling the food gap for the most vulnerable.”
WFP is providing family rations of cereals, pulses, fortified cooking oil and blended foods to improve food consumption and reduce malnutrition. WFP has planned five distributions of six weeks each this year, funding permitting. There is currently a funding shortfall of US$2 million.
WFP’s programmes in Karamoja work in tandem to address chronic food and nutrition insecurity. The relief programme runs alongside other initiatives including asset-creation projects implemented by WFP through the Second Northern Uganda Social Action Fund (NUSAF 2), a community-based supplementary feeding programme, a mother and child health and nutrition programme, and school feeding.
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WFP is the world's largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide. Each year, on average, WFP feeds more than 90 million people in more than 70 countries.