Most food insecure people live in areas prone to natural hazards and they are the least able to cope with shocks. Due to their vulnerability and limited capacity to manage risks, disasters often trap poor households in a downward spiral of food insecurity and poverty. Strategies and innovations at scale are needed to reduce disaster risk and to build people's resilience over time.

WFP Disaster Risk Reduction Innovations

WFP is a leading innovator in the area of food security and disaster risk reduction.  WFP has pioneered cutting edge emergency preparedness and early warning systems that have been adopted globally.  

WFP has also led the application of innovative risk financing tools, such as index insurance, in disaster response and safety nets to protect assets, reduce risks, and improve the effectiveness of risk management. 

The R4 Rural Resilience Initiative 

R4 is a groundbreaking joint initiative by WFP and Oxfam America present in Ethiopia, Senegal, Malawi and Zambia. This comprehensive resilience building approach allows food insecure farmers to pay for micro insurance in exchange for work. Assets built through the initiative’s risk reduction activities promote resilience steadily decreasing vulnerability to disasters over time. 

The Livelihoods, Early Assessment and Protection (LEAP) Initiative

Developed by the Government of Ethiopia in collaboration with WFP and other partners, LEAP is an integrated early warning- early action tool. LEAP uses climate services to trigger contingency funding in response to severe droughts, allowing early distribution of food or cash to the people projected to need early assistance. LEAP illustrates how we can improve the effectiveness of disaster response by linking early warning with safety nets and risk financing tools such as contingence finance. 


WFP is developing FoodSECuRE to substantially improve the way we address the increasing impacts of climate disasters on the most food-insecure people before and after disasters occur. FoodSECuRE responds directly to calls from countries to develop stronger institutional mechanisms at all levels to manage increasing climate risks. It is a multilateral, multi-year, replenishable climate fund designed to support community-centered action to reinforce and build resilience to climate-related impacts. 

Food For Assets

Food Assistance for Assets (FFA) programmes can produce immediate advantages for a community in terms of food security and nutrition. At the same time, they can help reduce risks from natural disasters and contribute to long-term benefits for the environment and for livelihoods. This, in turn, increases a community's resilience.

Managing Environmental Resources To Enable Transitions (MERET)

MERET is a model for sustainable natural resource management. Through Meret, which means land in Amharic, chronically food insecure communities, particularly women, participate in environmental rehabilitation and income-generating activities.

Weather Risk Management Facility (WRMF)

A joint initiative by WFP & IFAD to reduce smallholders’ vulnerability to weather and other risks that limit agricultural production and food security.

3-Pronged Approach

WFP identifies needs tailors programmes to local context ensuring community ownership through three tools: Integrated Context Analysis, Seasonal Livelihood Programming (SLP) and Community-based Participatory Planning (CBPP).