Colombia has suffered more than four decades of internal violence resulting in the displacement of millions of people; estimates range between 1.8 million and 3.7 million internally displaced people over the past 20 years.
Assessment results and past trends indicate that an average of 530,000 eople will require WFP food assistance each year over the next three years. Many who are forced to flee do not register with the Government as displaced people because they are afraid of being stigmatized or threatened or do not meet strict criteria for registration; others are in the process of registering.
Without official registration and proper identity documents, it is difficult for displaced people to access key humanitarian and social services offered by the Government.Furthermore, threats to rural populations by illegal armed groups increasingly restrict movement and limit access to markets and agricultural land, and consequently to food and other goods.
WFP assistance will address the needs of the displaced and vulnerable populations who cannot be reached through government humanitarian and social sector programmes. In this context, this protracted relief and recovery operation will focus on four strategic pillars:
continued emergency support to the newly-displaced;
focused and consolidated WFP actions with an emphasis on the nutrition and health dimensions of food security;
joint programming and coordination with key government, United Nations system and private-sector partners;
tracking of key themes and trends in food security so as to adapt programming modalities over time and demonstrate key results and outcomes.
This operation is in line with WFP Strategic Objectives 2, 3 and 4. It aims to protect and help restore the livelihoods of the displaced and other violence-affected populations; support the improvement of the nutritional status of targeted populations, especially pregnant and lactating women and children under 5; and support access to education for displaced and at-risk populations.
The operation contributes to the following Millennium Development Goals: 1 – eradicate extreme poverty and hunger; 2 – achieve universal primary education; 4 – reduce child mortality; and 5 – improve maternal health.
As part of its hand-over strategy, WFP will work closely with the Government, specifically with the two main government institutions charged with assistance to vulnerable populations and displaced populations (Acción Social and the Instituto Colombiano de Bienestar Familiar) to assist displaced people to overcome obstacles to food security and facilitate access to government services and safety-net programmes.