WFP Benin Country Brief, May 2021

Situation Report
Originally published


In Numbers

1,342 mt of food assistance distributed in April

USD 1.1 m six months net funding requirements (June-November 2021)

612,860 people assisted in April 2021

Operational Updates

Implementation of a Benin school feeding model

• WFP supports the Government of Benin’s national development priorities - of achieving food and nutrition security and promoting access to education - through the National Integrated School Feeding Programme (PNASI 2017-2021).

• A national committee was established to pilot the design of a national home-grown school feeding (HGSF) model adapted to the local context, which is being tested in 30 selected primary schools. The HGSF links school feeding programmes with local smallholder farmers to provide schoolchildren with locally produced food that is safe, diverse, and nutritious. WFP's role within the steering committee consists of identifying the schools, coordinating and implementing the pilot project, strengthening institutional capacities, and advising the committee.

• Partnership agreements were established with the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and with the World Vegetable Centre, who will share their expertise to enhance the school and community gardening techniques. This aligns with WFP Benin’s Country Strategic Plan (CSP) strategic outcome 1, which aims to promote education, health, and nutrition outcomes within targeted schools and communities, in a way that relies on and stimulates local food production.

Community mobilisation towards the school feeding programme

• WFP provides daily school meals to public primary schools located in vulnerable rural areas of the country, to meet daily food and nutrition needs of schoolchildren and to increase school enrolment and attendance rates. This includes facilitating the purchase, transport, and delivery of food items, including maize, rice, beans and peas, to provide a complete food basket.

• In May, WFP provided school meals to over 600,000 schoolchildren in targeted rural communities.

• WFP organized a workshop in Bohicon to meet potential local food producers and suppliers to the school feeding programme, and to invite them to participate in and apply to WFP's food procurement process. This approach emerged as an opportunity to improve the livelihoods of rural communities and to strengthen the nexus between nutrition, agriculture, and social protection.

Capacity strengthening and knowledge management

• WFP is encouraging a review of the National School Food Policy to support the Government of Benin in the development of a law focused on food and nutrition security. This law is intended to integrate school feeding.
Under the CSP strategic outcome 3, WFP aims to institutionalize the school feeding programme and to strengthen the capacities of national and local institutions.
Technical discussions have started.

• WFP is also interacting with the Regional Centre of Excellence against Hunger and Malnutrition (CERFAM) based in Abidjan, in order to explore areas of collaboration to support the Beninese Government in the fight against malnutrition.