WFP Kenya — Nutrition Resource Update May 2017

from World Food Programme
Published on 19 May 2017


The current drought in Kenya was declared a national disaster by the Government in February. Although rain has now reached some parts of the country, drier-thanaverage conditions continue. Some 2.6 million people in Kenya’s 23 arid and semi-arid counties are continuing to be acutely food insecure.

In these counties, 268,000 young children are moderately acutely malnourished in addition to 37,000 pregnant and breastfeeding mothers who are registered in health facilities. WFP has initiated treatment of children with moderate acute malnutrition using ready-to-use supplementary food in the 10 arid drought-affected counties.2 In addition, WFP will start the treatment of children in the 13 semiarid drought-affected counties3 with supplementary food in May as a direct response to the ongoing drought.

For the treatment of acute malnutrition in pregnant and breastfeeding mothers, WFP is delivering vegetable oil to health facilities in all 23 counties, which, combined with fortified blended flour provided by the Government, will make up the supplementary food required to treat malnourished mothers. WFP gratefully acknowledges US$1.1 million from European Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection Operations (ECHO), US$4 million from the UN Central Emergency Respond Fund, which, along with US$200,000 in multilateral funding, and resources from the Ministry of Health will cover the requirements for treatment of acute malnutrition until October.

Ensuring continuity of treatment of moderate acute malnutrition will decrease the risk of morbidity and mortality of children and mothers and help to decrease prevalence of severe acute malnutrition. Beneficiaries admitted into acute malnutrition treatment programmes will be prioritized to receive cash transfers through the Chakula kwa Jamii4 interventions from the State Department of Special Programmes, with technical support from WFP.

In direct response to the ongoing drought, WFP and partners are implementing a prevention of moderate acute malnutrition (blanket supplementary feeding) activity for children aged 6 to 59 months and all pregnant and breastfeeding mothers in areas where acute malnutrition is over the emergency threshold of 15 percent.

WFP is grateful for US$1.2 million received from the Government of Denmark, US$1.1 million from ECHO and US$500,000 received from the Government of Japan that is enabling blanket supplementary feeding to commence in the sub-counties of Turkana North and Kibish (in Turkana County) and North Horr (in Marsabit County) in mid-May. This will cover 50,000 children and pregnant and breastfeeding mothers. Global acute malnutrition in these areas is above 30 percent – double the threshold that WHO considers a nutrition emergency.

Based on contributions that are under negotiation, WFP plans to roll out blanket supplementary feeding in Laisamis sub-county (in Marsabit County) and in the entirety of Mandera County in June. Funding under negotiation would cover 20,000 vulnerable women and children in Laisamis for six months and 171,000 women and children in Mandera for June and July.

WFP requires US$20.9 million to continue this blanket supplementary feeding and expand to the other identified priority areas.