UN World Food Programme

Food needed for 2.3 million quake survivors until April

Some 2.3 million people will require food assistance at least through April 2006, according to the latest emergency food security assessment conducted by WFP, UNICEF, and OXFAM.

Emergency food security assessment

  • Emergency conditions persist in the earthquake zone and are unlikely to abate before the spring.
  • Food and shelter are in critical need if those who endured the earthquake are to survive the rapidly approaching winter.
  • Some 2.3 million people will require food assistance at least through April 2006, according to the latest emergency food security assessment conducted by WFP, UNICEF, and OXFAM.
  • Of that total, 2.1 million people are scattered about the rural parts of the earthquake zone. Another 230,000 live in the worst affected towns and this number is growing.
  • Click here to read the latest emergency food security assessment.

Food distributions

  • To date, WFP has dispatched 13,735 tonnes of food and has reached 901,757 survivors, against a target of one million of the people hit hardest by the earthquake, which struck on October 8.
  • Commodities distributed include high-energy biscuits, dates, wheat flour, pulses, and vegetable oil.
  • Another 1.3 million people have received food from the Government of Pakistan, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), and non-governmental organisations (NGOs).
  • Even so, WFP estimates that some 100,000 people in remote mountainous areas inaccessible by road and from the air have received neither shelter nor any other form of aid.

Pre-positioning supplies

  • It is important to pre-position supplies close to the more remote villages before winter sets in next month.
  • WFP plans to pre-position and then lift or drop sufficient food for 200,000 people in hard-to-reach areas for one month, and then to re-supply each month. Winter will make re-supplying problematic but not impossible.

Funding a critical challenge

  • Funding remains a critical challenge for all emergency operations. WFP's emergency effort has received only 38 percent of the funding it needs.
  • Despite a recent US$10 million influx of donations for WFP's air operation, the agency has had to shelve plans to expand its 15-helicopter Pakistan fleet.
  • Such cost-saving measures, coupled with the Pakistan Army's work to clear and repair roads damaged by landslides (thus reducing the need for helicopters in some areas), have ensured that the WFP-run U.N. Humanitarian Air Service (UNHAS) undertaking in Pakistan can remain aloft into January.