In my time here, people have asked ‘Why is food assistance needed in a country like Congo, where nature is so generous?’ The attached study, implemented thanks to a grant from BMZ, provides some answers.
The Household Economy Analysis process allowed us to map out 9 distinct ‘livelihood zones’ in Congo. It also produced household profiles for the Pool, the part of the country that has experienced conflict on and off for the past 20 years. It shows that for the poorest households, monetary poverty and low access to land constitute serious obstacles to food security, even in an apparently green and well-watered part of the country. Recurrent conflict in the Pool only exacerbates these challenges by undermining the casual labor markets poorest households rely on for income.
We will use this baseline to strengthen our monitoring of food security in the Pool and to boost our targeting there. We will also do similar profiles in other parts of the country, including the flood-affected North.