The evaluation found and concluded high relevance, coherence with national needs and polices, and effectiveness of portfolio’s outputs. WFP assisted an average of 2.9 million people per year in a difficult and complex environment. At the outcome level, general food assistance including cash-based transfers and nutrition activities helped to prevent precipitous declines in food security. Reaching 300,000 students per year, school feeding was associated with improved enrolment and retention. WFP capitalized on its areas of comparative advantage, using its unrivalled ability to reach scale in conjunction with its partners. WFP displayed good cost awareness, introducing a range of innovations to minimize costs. However, food distributions were unpredictable as a result of downstream pipeline-management issues. Access restrictions were frequently imposed by the government and opposition, contravening protection and humanitarian principles. Nevertheless, WFP served beneficiaries based on need in government- and opposition-controlled areas. Purchase-for-progress activities and the country office’s experience in building resilience were limited while outcome monitoring was weak. Except in general food distribution and nutrition activities, opportunities to build coherence and connectedness by capitalizing on internal synergies were identified but largely unrealized. The sustainability of feeder roads and the quality of food assistance for assets were limited.
The evaluation recommended that WFP should: set a strategic vision and design a medium-term strategy for responding to a multi-year acute crisis; maximize the humanitarian – development synergies by addressing the underlying constraints for expanding cash based transfers; and refine an inter-agency approach on resilience; further increase efficiency by working with partners for upfront investments in improved transport infrastructure; developing a strategy for a digital identity of beneficiaries; and food pipeline management; innovate to improve programme quality by investments in food and nutrition assessments; and adjust the corporate processes for emergency deployment and regular reassignment to ensure appropriate and timely staffing capacity at Country Office.