ASUNCIÓN- The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) launched an emergency response to assist 32,210 people. Two mechanisms were implemented to assist families affected by the severe flooding: readily available coupons to redeem for food and cash to buy food.
In the city of Asunción, 24,335 people received coupons to redeem for food in the supermarket chain ‘Stock’. Another 7,875 people in four municipalities in Ñeembucú received coupons and cash to purchase food in early August.
In coordination with the Ministry of Agriculture and the FAO, WFP will organize agricultural fairs in Ñeembucú in order for beneficiary families to purchase fruits and vegetables produced by smallholder farms—thus linking purchasing to local production and marketing.
Food security for all families who benefit from WFP assistance were extremely vulnerable as a result of the flood, and needed food assistance urgently.
The distribution of coupons and cash were coordinated through the National Emergency Secretariat (SEN) and the municipalities of Asunción, Pilar, Isla Unbú, Villalbín and Cerrito. The operation is administered by the WFP Country Office in Bolivia, because there is currently no Country Office in Paraguay.
Initial WFP support through vouchers and cash for affected families are scheduled to be extended for a period of two months. During this time, WFP and the National Food and Nutrition Institute (INAN) are developing a survey of the affected families, in order to determine the effects of the flood on food and nutrition. This survey will measure the impact of aid and hopefully predict future needs for any subsequent response missions.