This operation has been modified as per budget revision 8 (see below).
After decades of war and instability Iraq is at a crossroads in terms of political stability and economic recovery, but parts of the country remain fragile. Recent improvements in access to basic social services have not yet translated into significant welfare gains for the people: undernutrition, including high rates of global acute malnutrition and stunting in food-insecure districts, is a particular concern. Security and access to social services and employment are the main priorities for Iraqis.
According to the recent comprehensive food security and vulnerability analysis, the food security situation in Iraq improved between 2005 and 2008, but 41 out of 115 districts are still vulnerable or extremely vulnerable to food insecurity.
The Iraqi public distribution system is the largest element of the social protection system and the main source of food for poor people. The Government’s National Development Strategy (2007–2010) and the International Compact for Iraq call for the development of social safety nets for the poor and vulnerable to supplement the public distribution system. This is a priority in the National Development Plan (2010–2014) and the United Nations Development Assistance Framework (2011–2014).
In line with WFP’s Country Strategy for Iraq (2010–2014), developed in coherence with the Government, donors and cooperating partners, the goal of protracted relief and recovery operation 200035 is to support the Government in improving social protection for vulnerable groups affected by prolonged conflict.
The operation consists of two components: (a) support for vulnerable groups to restore and rebuild their lives through improved access to food and primary health care; this activity will provide family food rations and encourage pregnant and lactating women and malnourished children under 5 to access health care; and (b) school feeding as a safety net to restore attendance and learning, which have been adversely affected by conflict, and to reduce drop-outs among primary schoolchildren.
Hand-over will depend on improved security and the growing capacity of the Government to design, implement and fund safety nets to protect the most vulnerable Iraqis. Support for progressive hand-over of activities to a country programme and the Government will be provided as conditions permit.
The operation is consistent with WFP Strategic Objective 3 and Millennium Development Goals 1, 2, 4 and 5. It is linked to a planned WFP development project responding to a request from the Government to assist with reform of the public distribution system.
Budget revision 8 to Iraq’s PRRO 200035 extends the project for an additional period of ten months until 31 December 2015. School meals will be reintroduced in pilot areas in Thi Qar province, after the school feeding activity was suspended in 2014. The total number of children who will receive school meals in the pilot activity will be approximately 21,000 students. An additional 71 persons will benefit from capacity development and augmentation activities to be conducted in connection with the Social Safety Nets (SSN) reform and setting up of a Food Security Monitoring System (FSMS). Activities related to the reform of the Public Distribution System (PDS) have been removed from the PRRO and transferred to the EMOP 200677 which is carried out in parallel to this PRRO.