Hunger in the news

17 August 2010

The United Nations Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) has allocated an additional 15 million U.S. dollars to enable the UN food agency to provide relief to an estimated 1.7 million people (..). The CERF allocation made available to the UN World Food Program (WFP) last week will be used to improve nutrition and provide livelihood support to people most affected by the crisis, said the officials.

17 August 2010

THE UNITED Nations World Food Programme (WFP) has been forced to make an “agonising” decision in Niger, the country worst hit by the West Africa food crisis, and suspend food aid to families with children over the age of two because of a huge funding shortfall. According to Gianluca Ferrera, deputy country director for the WFP in Niger, acute malnutrition rates stood at 16.7 per cent of children between the ages of three and five years, above the emergency threshold of 15 per cent. (..) “We had planned to distribute 75,000 tonnes of food in August and September but because of limited resources can only hand out 42,000,” he told The Irish Times.

17 August 2010

The World Food Programme (WFP) will not be able to help all of the 8 million people in Niger going hungry this year unless it receives more money from donors, a spokesman for the U.N. agency said. (..) "With the limited resources, it will be very difficult, even impossible to meet the initial target (of 7.9 million people) unless donors come forward as quickly as possible," the spokesman said.

17 August 2010

This year again, Niger is short of food. Nearly half of the country’s 15.2 million inhabitants are facing hunger due to failed harvests in 2009, according to the government. The World Food Programme (WFP) estimates that more than 212,500 tons of food are needed between August and December to fill the food gap. But bringing food to families living in remote areas of the sandy landlocked country with few roads is an arduous task.

16 August 2010

Two weeks today - it's Monday here in London - I returned from Niger. Al Jazeera had begun carrying a series of reports from the country which warned that the severe hunger in the country was at risk of tipping into a full blown famine. (..) The United Nation's World Food Programme now officially backs what the people told us. They say half the country's population, 7.3 million people - are in desperate need of food. (..) The WFP has appealed for $213 million in emergency aid, but is 40 per cent short of its target.

15 August 2010

Niger is now facing the worst hunger crisis in its history, with almost half the country's population in desperate need of food and up to one in six children suffering from acute malnutrition, aid officials say. Malek Triki, West Africa spokesman for the United Nations' World Food Programme, said villagers in Niger are describing the situation as worse than in 2005, when aid organizations treated tens of thousands of children for malnutrition, and worse even than 1973, when thousands died.

13 August 2010

Nearly 4 million people in Niger affected by drought will receive protective rations while they wait for the October harvest, the World Food Program said.(..)"People in Niger have suffered intensely from this protracted drought," said WFP Regional Director Thomas Yanga in a statement. "It is critical to provide for the needs of these malnourished children."

11 August 2010

Some five thousand people in Niger lost their homes and crops after the River Niger burst its banks at the weekend. The West African country is already suffering from severe food shortages caused by recent drought.(..)"Rain in the Sahel is much welcome but it needs to be properly distributed over time and over space which is the major issue now," the WFP's Naouar Labidi told Reuters news agency.

3 August 2010

About 900,000 children in the West African state of Niger are on the brink of malnutrition, according to the UN. The UN's World Food Programme is calling for urgent help to get food aid to areas in the country that have suffered years of failed crops due to drought.

3 August 2010

A catastrophe is about to unfold for millions of the world's poorest people. It happened five years ago, and this time the international aid agencies were in place when the early warning lights started flashing. (..) The World Food Programme (WFP), which had planned to provide for 2.3 million people in Niger alone between March and October, has had to dramatically revise that figure to 7.9 million. It takes between two and three months for food procured internationally to arrive, but with the rainy season under way in a vast landlocked country like Niger, it may well take longer.