WFP Broadens Iraq Cash-for-Work Initiative

Men prepare bags of food aid to be distributed in Baghdad, Iraq. The World Food Program expands its cash-for-work initiative in the country. Photo by: David Gross / WFP

The World Food Program hopes to help more than 11,000 Iraqis meet their daily food requirements under an expanded cash-for-work program.

The initiative aims to provide beneficiaries with short-term employment in agricultural infrastructure projects. Activities include clearing and reconstructing sewage and irrigation canals, planting trees, and rehabilitating farmland.

As reported by Devex, WFP launched the scheme in Diyala, Iraq on May 19.

“Cash-for-work projects work really effectively in places where food is available in the market yet people cannot afford it – as is the case in Iraq,” said Edward Kallon, WFP’s top official in Iraq. “This project not only gives beneficiaries a job but it secures future food production by focusing on the agricultural sector.”

The U.S. government’s donation of USD5 million has helped make the program’s expansion possible.  

For a three-month period, participants will earn USD10 per day. The pay is lower than the average daily wage of USD13-USD17 in Iraq “so that it benefits only the most vulnerable members of the community who might not otherwise be able to find work,” the United Nations said in a news release.

About the author

  • Eliza villarino 400x400

    Eliza Villarino

    Eliza Villarino currently manages one of today’s leading publications on humanitarian aid, global health and international development, the weekly GDB. At Devex, she has helped grow a global newsroom, with talented journalists from major development hubs such as Washington, D.C, London and Brussels. She regularly writes about innovations in global development.