A woman shows her groundnut harvest from the livelihoods project. Coyright: WFP/Lydia Wamala
As funds run out a successful livelihoods programme faces an uncertain future in Karamoja.
KAMPALA – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) warned today that its successful asset creation and livelihoods programme in the Karamoja region of northeastern Uganda could close unless it receives new funding in the coming weeks.
“The joint programme has received in total nearly US$8 million this year from Japan, Spain, Italy, Australia and Norway,” said WFP Uganda Country Director Stanlake Samkange. “But we urgently need another US$8 million to take us through the next six months.
“Without these funds, an estimated 400,000 people who are currently being targeted by the programme will likely need food assistance in the coming months,” Samkange added.
Launched in April, and integrated into the Government’s Karamoja Action Plan for Food Security, the new initiative dramatically reduced the numbers of people in need of emergency food assistance. The programme aims at assisting moderately food insecure families through seasonal cash and food incentives to enable them to acquire skills and productive assets.
The people of Karamoja have enthusiastically turned out to take part in the programme, which has more than 360 projects in the region. With the involvement of district and local authorities, the programme is succeeding in building community assets and changing mindsets.
With support from local leaders, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, the International Organization for Migration and non-governmental organizations, WFP and the Government have mobilised some 50,000 families to take part in projects that focus on enhancing nutrition, regenerating and protecting the environment and water harvesting.
The initiative complements an Emergency Operation aimed at the most vulnerable families in Karamoja. The Emergency Operation was well supported by donors, especially the United States Agency for International Development Food for Peace programme. “But on its own, this type of support cannot end hunger in a place of extreme challenges,” Samkange said.