USAID Ups Aid for African Countries Facing Food Crises

Men load sacks of food aid to a ship bound for the Horn of Africa. The U.S. Agency for International Development will boost its emergency assistance for food-insecure African countries. Photo by: USAID

The U.S. Agency for International Development is boosting its emergency assistance for two food-insecure African countries.

The agency has provided USD47 million to support current World Food Program operations in Niger, where an estimated 8 million people are in need of immediate food aid, according to a news release.

The contribution, which includes in-kind food and cash for local and regional food aid procurement, is expected to help support WFP operations over the next five months. It brings USAID’s overall response to the Niger food crisis in 2010 to more than USD105 million. In addition to feeding programs, the response covers nutrition drives aimed at some 1 million under-five children and pregnant and lactating women and support for cash-for-work programs for up to 215,000 Nigerien households affected by the food crisis.

Meanwhile, USAID donated approximately USD5 million to help avert a humanitarian crisis in Uganda. The grant will be disbursed over two-and-a-half years and is expected to bridge short-term food assistance with longer-term recovery initiatives in the country, the Observer reports.

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    Ivy Mungcal

    As former senior staff writer, Ivy Mungcal contributed to several Devex publications. Her focus is on breaking news, and in particular on global aid reform and trends in the United States, Europe, the Caribbean, and the Americas. Before joining Devex in 2009, Ivy produced specialized content for U.S. and U.K.-based business websites.