After closing in 1996, WFP is re-establishing a presence in the Philippines with programmes designed to support the ongoing peace process in Mindanao, the southern Muslim-populated region.
The agency will focus on providing assistance to areas affected by the conflict between the Government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), where there are large numbers of internally displaced persons and high rates of malnutrition. WFP will work in close collaboration with Government counterparts at the national, provincial and local levels, as well as non-government organisations, donor agencies, UN partners and communities.
These partners will assist in the implementation of the programme as well as contribute complementary inputs. Mindanao, particularly the Autonomous Region for Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) and adjacent provinces, are those defined as "conflict-affected" areas where people have been affected by successive displacements.
These areas share poverty indicators far below the national average. Over 50 percent of the population in the region is living below the national poverty line of 60 cents per person per day. Approximately 30 percent of the children under five years of age are stunted, and the rate of children completing primary education is 33 percent, half the national average.
In conflict-affected areas of Mindanao, WFP will jointly implement with its partners projects that aim to:
- Contribute to a peaceful resolution of the conflict in Mindanao by addressing the food security needs of vulnerable populations living in conflict-affected areas;
- Support the reconstruction of household and community assets;
- Improve the nutritional status of pregnant and lactating women and children under-two years of age;
- Increase the net enrolment rate and attendance rate for boys and girls in grades one through six;
- Support restoration of livelihoods;
- Support extension of Tuberculosis (TB) treatment programmes;
- Strengthen the Government and NGOs/Civil Society in the implementation of effective food assistance in conflict-affected areas in Mindanao.