(l-r) Afurika Juyenal (CARE), George Heymell (WFP), Jean-Michel Vigreux (CARE). Copyright: WFP/Grace Tillyard
The World Food Programme (WFP), the Cooperative For American Relief EveryWhere (CARE) and Action Contre la Faim (ACF) have launched a new food safety net and nutrition program funded by USAID. 'Kore Lavi' will cover 23 provinces across 5 regions in Haiti over the next four years and aims to support the Haitian government to improve access to locally produced food for the most vulnerable families in Haiti.
HINCHE. --The representatives of the three agencies and government officials attended the launch of Kore Lavi, kreol for ‘Supporting Life’, in Hinche on 25 September. The programme is the first of its kind for WFP in Haiti. Under the leadership of CARE, the agencies will support the government to develop a system to identify and reach the most vulnerable families in Haiti and assist people who have had a prolonged exposure to hunger through a voucher based safety net system.
Safety net programmes are designed to reduce the impact of disasters on vulnerable populations and to prevent them from falling into poverty. Prolonged exposure to hunger, illness or limited access to education can all contribute to making a family vulnerable. In order to make safety net systems effective governments and organizations need to understand exactly who is in most need of help and why.
“WFP is known for its ability to respond in an emergency,” says WFP Representative in Haiti, George Heymell. “Kore Lavi, however, will also tackle the problem of vulnerability by providing a safety net for people who are chronically food insecure so they become more resistant to shocks. To make sure that we are reaching those most in need WFP will develop a new targeting system with our partners and the government to better identify and help very vulnerable Haitian households.”
Once enrolled in the programme 18.000 of the most vulnerable households will receive electronic cash and food vouchers for two years to buy the food they need locally with the support of local network providers, such as Digicel.
A further 205,000 households will benefit from health and nutrition support. Kore Lavi will provide nutritious food as an incentive for pregnant and lactating women to improve their knowledge by going to nutrition training sessions.
Through these different approaches the Kore Lavi programme will seek to lift the most in need out poverty and hunger in Haiti, one of the most disaster prone countries in the world. However, despite ongoing efforts and the generous support of donors WFP still cannot reach all those in need. Today 3 million people in Haiti are still categorized as food insecure - meaning they struggle to feed their families on a daily basis. Of those, 0.6 million are severely food insecure, which means they cannot meet their food needs without external assistance.