Improving food security and livelihood of earthquake-affected households in Nepal

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In addition to having damaged over 900,000 houses and buildings, the earthquakes that struck Nepal in April and May 2015 have also greatly impacted food security and reduced livelihood opportunities for hundreds of thousands of people. ACTED has been working to support them, through a USAID-FFP-funded project.

Food security and livelihoods: two very negatively impacted sectors

The earthquakes that struck Nepal in spring 2015 have rendered much of the agricultural and food industry inert, vastly increasing the risk of food insecurity. Much of Nepal’s fertile land which is dependent on terracing methods was compromised due to the frequency of landslides. Furthermore, most economic activities in the country came to a crawl in the wake of the earthquake, affecting access to vital resources such as food.

With the transportation and cultivation of food resources severely impacted by the earthquakes, food accessibility has become a paramount issue, with 224 Village Development Commities (VDCs) being classified as food insecure.

ACTED provides food and livelihoods opportunities to over 11,000 households

This project has the goal of providing life-saving food aid and contributing to the improvement of short-term livelihoods for the most food insecure within the districts of Dolakha, Dhading, Kathmandu, Sindupalchok, and Okhaldunga. The project will deliver food distributions to the most highly vulnerable households, alongside with Livelihood Inputs for Work (distribution of agricultural kits and Harvest Storage Units) and Cash for Work activities. The project’s main interventions aim at distributing food to over 2,200 vulnerable households, Livelihood for Work activities for over 3,300 households who are unable to access markets and Cash for Work activities for 2,300 households.

A challenging context for ACTED’s teams

The country of Nepal is currently dealing with several internal issues making it difficult for humanitarian organizations to institute projects. The situation has spurred an acute shortage of fuel, which has put tremendous pressure on the transportation industry, increasing costs and slowing the movement of products within the country. However, ACTED has been able to begin food distributions to over 700 beneficiaries in Dolakha, alongside with completing over 37,000 mandays of Cash for Work activities in Okhaldhunga.