- 5.3 million
- people internally displaced
- 11 million
- people are food insecure
The war in Ukraine has had drastic consequences, both for people inside the country and for those around the world dependent on its huge grain supplies.
It has caused one of the fastest forced population movements since the Second World War. Close to 8 million Ukrainians are living as refugees across Europe, and another 5.3 million are internally displaced. Many are destitute, having lost their homes and livelihoods. As food production and supply lines are disrupted by fighting, many families in the east and south do not have reliable access to nutritious food.
WFP uses a flexible mix of food and cash assistance to support vulnerable people wherever they are. This includes working with local partners to distribute food rations in areas near the frontline, and providing cash transfers wherever people have access to banks and markets to buy food.
Ukraine is usually one of the world's major breadbaskets, producing enough food to feed 400 million people per year prior to the war. The war has drastically cut supplies for countries in acute need, while driving up food prices. WFP has supported efforts to reopen the Black Sea ports. We are working around the clock to transport wheat grain from Ukraine to countries in need, since an agreement was reached for such exports via the Black Sea, in July 2022. This also provides an important boost to Ukraine’s economy.
WFP emphasizes a localized approach, working through local partners, businesses, trade networks and institutions to support the Government and people of Ukraine.
What the World Food Programme is doing in Ukraine
WFP is prioritizing cash assistance wherever banks are functioning and food is easily accessible. Cash assistance gives people the freedom to meet their essential needs as they choose, and stimulates local economies. WFP has distributed more than US$450 million in cash assistance to over 2.6 million people since March 2022. WFP is working with the Ministry of Social Policy to help improve the efficiency and transparency of the Unified Social Registry and make it easier for vulnerable people to request and access financial assistance and social benefits from the State and international organizations alike. Where it makes sense and is safe, WFP distributes supermarket value vouchers to help people purchase food and other necessities directly from those markets. We encourage retailers to keeps shops open, to reopen them or to restock their shelves.
WFP delivers food kits and ready-to-eat food rations, primarily in hard-to-reach and frontline areas under intense fighting, where commercial supply lines are disrupted and access to food is unreliable. Food kits typically comprise wheat flour or rice, pasta, sunflower oil, sugar and canned beans or meat. WFP buys almost all of this food inside Ukraine and works with local bakeries to deliver bread. WFP also provides food commodities to institutions such as hospitals, care centres, displacement centres and orphanages, to support the provision of hot meals.
Demining and food systems
WFP is working with FAO, the Government and the Fondation Suisse de Deminage to clear mines from farm land and small plots, and thereby help restore rural livelihoods, boost agricultural production, and phase out the need for food assistance among thousands of families. The initial phase of the project is in the Kharkiv region. WFP continues to scale up its procurement from Ukrainian food producers, both for food assistance inside the country and for humanitarian operations globally.
Emergency telecommunications and logistics
On behalf of the United Nations, WFP coordinates humanitarian logistics and telecommunications services in Ukraine, as the lead organisation of the Logistics Cluster and the Emergency Telecommunications Cluster. The Logistics Cluster consolidates and shares information on logistics services, facilities and access constraints, provides road transport, cargo delivery and storage services, and supports cargo consolidation and planning for humanitarian convoys.
WFP supports daily hot meals in schools under the National School Feeding Programme, starting with 58 schools in the Kyiv region. These meals are served to approximately 8,000 children, many of whom are displaced and directly affected by the war.
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