World’s largest humanitarian agency, United Nations (UN) World Food Programme (WFP) says it recognises threats to the country that come with climate change and will thus focus on initiatives aimed to reduce the country’s susceptibility to such threats.
New WFP country director Benoit Thiry made such remarks when he presented his letters of credence to Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Emmanuel Fabiano last week.
Thiry who has also worked in Djibouti and Niger in the same capacity said his organisation commits to ensure Malawi is nutrition secure and resilient to shocks.
He said: “WFP recognizes the threats that come with climate change in the country and will, thus, focus more on resilience building and social protection activities in the coming years.”
And according to a press statement released on Friday, the organisation posits that “a holistic response approach that concurrently focuses on reducing vulnerabilities and risks should gradually build a more food and nutrition security and resilient Malawi”.
This is in addition to its approach of rapidly responding to disasters when they strike.
Speaking after receiving the letters from Thiry , Fabiano hglighted the significance of WFP support to the country saying government recognises the strides it is making to avert effects of hunger.
He said: “Government of Malawi recognized WFP as a true partner and acknowledged the strides WFP is making to combat hunger in the country through its School Meals Programme, nutrition programme and resilience initiatives, among others.
WFP began operations in Malawi in 1965 and is working with government and other non governmental orgaisations (NGOs) to bring food assistance to the country’s most vulnerable people including thousands of refugees in the country’s refugee centres.
“Through linkages with ongoing resilience and development programmes, WFP can address the underlying vulnerabilities and drivers of food insecurity, such as climate change, gender inequality, poor livelihood opportunities, limited local capacities to engage in development programmes and poor dietary” diversity,” reads the statement in part.
Worldwide it assists about 80 million people each year delivering food assistance in emergencies and working with communities to improve nutrition and build resilience.