WFP Chief calls for strengthened partnership on climate and disaster preparedness during first visit to the Pacific
Suva, Fiji – The Executive Director of United Nations World Food Programme, Cindy McCain, has called for enhanced disaster preparedness and the need to strengthen partnerships to address the growing threat of climate and how it impacts food and nutrition security during a visit to Pacific Island of Fiji.
“Climate change is no longer a warning for the future – it is happening today for communities in the Pacific. But we also have the knowledge and the tools at our disposal to protect communities, infrastructure, and development from the devastation caused by these events,” said McCain. “Lives and the future of these very islands are at stake- we must act now.”
Ahead of the South Pacific cyclone season, which starts in October, Executive Director McCain stressed the importance of increased partnerships among the countries to heighten the focus on anticipating, preparing for, and responding to disasters. She also affirmed WFP’s support to reinforce disaster management capacity in the region where the climate crisis is affecting 2.54 million people in countries and territories spread across 15 percent of the Earth’s surface.
The Executive Director met the Prime Minister of Fiji, Sitiveni Rabuka, the Acting Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat, Esala Nayasi, the Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, Lynda Diseru Tabuya, and several government representatives from the countries in which WFP operates under its Pacific Multi-Country Office, and representatives of regional and international agencies.
“I am proud of WFP’s work in the Pacific and partnership with national governments and regional bodies like the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat. Our experts in disaster preparedness, response and logistics are ready to support governments both in times of emergency and to adapt to our changing environment,” added McCain.
In the Pacific, WFP works with 14 governments as well as regional organisations to strengthen technical capacities in emergency telecommunications, data preparedness, logistics and supply chain.
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The United Nations World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian organization saving lives in emergencies and using food assistance to build a pathway to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change.
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