USAID announces $2.5 million in emergency food assistance to Haiti
"We remain committed to addressing Haiti's pressing humanitarian needs through our large ongoing bilateral assistance program as well as responding to unforeseen needs such as the onset of this drought in the Northwest. The United States continues to provide assistance to the people of Haiti to increase their access to food, health and education services," noted Adolfo Franco, USAID's Assistant Administrator for Latin America and the Caribbean.
As a result of crop failure, the region is experiencing abnormally high food prices, residents are leaving the region, and health centers are registering increased numbers of malnourished children. In response, food commodities will be provided to approximately 100,000 people between July 2002 and January 2003 to assist them until the next harvest, expected in January.
This emergency funding is the second USAID grant provided to Haiti in the past 3 months. Following the flood disaster that occurred in the South and Grand Anse regions in May, USAID immediately responded with grants totaling $350,000 to provide immediate relief to flood victims and repair key road segments made impassable by landslides and flooding. In addition, some 180 metric tons of food assistance was provided to 4,000 affected families.
USAID funds a five-year $100 million food assisted development program in Haiti which aims to increase food security for poor families in six of Haiti's nine provinces. The program's activities focus on those people most vulnerable to malnutrition, i.e., pregnant women, nursing mothers, children under the age of 6 years old, poor farmers in food insecure areas, primary school children, chronically food insecure orphans, and institutionalized elderly and sick.
This year, USAID's food-assisted program in Haiti is valued at US $ 21.5 million, and includes about 63,000 metric tons of food commodities. USAID has other health, education, human rights and democracy programs in Haiti valued at $30 million.
For more information on USAID's programs in Haiti, please refer to www.usaid.gov.