PANAMA CITY –The World Food Programme (WFP) has appointed Miguel Barreto, a Peruvian national, as its new Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean. His duty will be to oversee WFP operations across the region.
“For me it is an honor to work for those in need within the region where I was born,” Barreto said upon his arrival in Panama, where the WFP Regional Bureau is located. “My commitment and the commitment of WFP are to continue to support the local governments in improving food and nutritional security of the most vulnerable people,” he added.
In Latin America and the Caribbean approximately 47 million people suffer from hunger and malnutrition, mainly women and children. “Although many of our countries are considered middle income, national averages mask profound inequities. The most vulnerable still face hunger daily, as well as malnutrition. Their plight is often exacerbated by constant emergencies associated with climate change, economic and food crises, limited access to food, inadequate diets, and migration,” Barreto said.
WFP has operations in eleven countries in the region: Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Cuba, Haiti, Dominican Republic, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia. WFP, in collaboration with the local governments, distributes on average food assistance to 6.3 million people within the region annually, most of them are women and children.
During his first assignment as Regional Director, Barreto visited Haiti at the end of January. There, he met with the national authorities, international donors and visited WFP projects in health centres and schools where WFP currently assists some 685,000 children through the government’s National School Feeding Programme.
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WFP is the world’s largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide. On average, WFP reaches more than 90 million people with food assistance in 80 countries each year.
For more information please contact (email address: email@example.com):
Alejandro Chicheri, WFP/Latin America and the Caribbean, Tel. 317 3900, Mob. 6671 5355
Elio Rujano, WFP/Latin America and the Caribbean, Tel. 317 3900, Mob. 6677 0608