Cameroon has a population of 20 million inhabitants, 40 percent of whom live below the poverty line. In rural areas, 55 percent of the population is poor while in the North and FarNorth regions this percentage exceeds 60 percent. The nutritional status of children under 5 is also of concern: 10 percent are acutely malnourished.
School enrolment rates are low, with a girl/boy ratio well below the national average. Food insecurity affects almost 10 percent of the rural population, with large disparities among regions; the North and Far North regions are most affected, with rates reaching 15 and 18 percent. In urban areas, food insecurity is particularly high in Douala, with almost 10 percent of households affected.
The overall objective of the country programme is to improve the food and nutrition security of rural households affected by chronically low agricultural production and recurrent climatic shocks in the North and Far North regions.
The specific objectives of the country programme are to promote primary education, particularly for girls; improve household food security by enhancing resilience to recurrent climatic shocks; reduce the prevalence of moderate acute malnutrition among children aged 6 to 59 months and pregnant and lactating women; and strengthen the capacity of the Government to reduce hunger, including through a hand-over strategy and local purchase.
The country programme was elaborated in close collaboration with the Government; it takes into account the Strategy for Growth and Employment 2010-2020 which aims to modernize the productive system, particularly the agricultural sector, and to enhance human development through improved health, training and social protection.