WFP Senegal Country Brief, August 2020

Situation Report
Originally published


In Numbers

USD 650,000 cash-based transfers

USD 21 m six months (September 2020 - February 2021) net funding requirements.

106,997 peoples assisted in August 2020

Operational Updates

• COVID 19 response:
WFP continued to actively participate in the technical and logistics committees set up by the Government and the United Nations System to facilitate the COVID-19 national response, including the coordination of meetings set to follow up on the implementation of the Emergency food assistance (PUSA).
Since 15 June 2020, WFP manages humanitarian flights for the benefit of the humanitarian community in Senegal connecting Dakar with Mauritania and Ghana. Since the pandemic started in March 2020, United Nations and NGO work was hindered by transport restrictions and other mitigation measures. The United Nations Humanitarian Air Service (UNHAS), managed by WFP, offers safe and cost-efficient transport. A total of 280 passengers from humanitarian agencies were transported during the mentioned period. With the gradual return to normalcy and the resumption of some commercial flights, UNHAS was closed on August 12, 2020 and only the itinerary between Senegal and Mauritania remains opened.

• School feeding:
A new memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed with the Ministry of National Education for the continuity of WFP support to the Government for the implementation of the school feeding activity. WFP continued to closely work with the Government to establish a national school feeding programme.
With the closure of schools from 16 March to 25 June, WFP implemented alternative distribution mechanisms to provide assistance to assisted pupils through cash transfers to their respective families. A total of USD 650,000 was distributed to 106,997 children.
This enabled children to attend a government-organized remote learning programme and prevent from a drop out.
As for the project Model Canteens, activities restarted in the field after a break due to the pandemic. Two field missions took place to undertake an environmental screening analysis for the construction of the biodigestor technology in beneficiary schools in the Departments of Sedhiou and Tambacounda. Constructions will be followed by other components of the project such as the garden school, henhouse and training on nutrition and hygiene practices.
Due to the constraints resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, the project implementation period has been extended up to March 2021 (instead of December 2020) to allow full completion of planned activities.

• Resilience:
R4 initiative activities on the ground are being implemented and will reach 12,000 participants in Tambacounda and Kolda. In order to better document the R4 initiative and measure the changes made to the livelihoods of participants and communities, WFP organized a baseline survey of participants and non-participants from the three Departments from 10 to 24 August.
As part of the Green Climate Fund project, WFP country office received technical support from the WFP regional SCOPE team over the past two-three months to prepare for the beneficiary registration exercise. This recording started on 17 August for a period of 20 days and is underway in the field.

In line with the government emergency food and nutritional security programme, food assistance for assets (FFA) activities started and will reach 3,500 participants in Matam, 2,100 in Podor and 1,000 in Salemata. The creation of assets and the subsequent money transfer to participants is scheduled for September 2020.

• Nutrition:
WFP's activities for screening for acute malnutrition were resumed with technical support to the national entity Cellule de Lutte contre la Malnutrition (CLM) in the Departments of Matam, Podor and Ranérou.
WFP and the Ministry of Health and Social Action are finalizing a four-month partnership agreement (September to December 2020) for the treatment of moderate acute malnutrition in five regions of Senegal (Matam, Louga, Tambacounda, Diourbel and Sédhiou) through the health service points.
For activities to prevent malnutrition during the lean season, WFP country office set up a Nutrition / CBT working group with the support of the WFP regional bureau to achieve modeling that allows the use of the cash transfer modality.
As part of WFP's support to the national roadmap for rice fortification in Senegal, a study on the most widely practiced rice preparation methods in Senegal was initiated and surveyors were trained, including on how to adapt their work to the current health context, and then deployed in the field to collect data.
The country office initiated discussions with Olam and DSM on a potential partnership in the form of an in-kind donation in response to the food crisis caused by COVID-19.
The Senegal SUN Business Network supported the participation of Senegalese companies in a call for applications for funding of nutritious food by the GAIN Foundation and one of its financial partners.
Reflections have also begun with the members of the Network and the University Gaston Berger to create a space for exchange and partnership between the two entities.

• Planning the lean season response:
WFP and the Government started implementing the lean season’s national Emergency Plan for Food Security (PUSA). The 2020 PUSA targets 529,625 people at risk of falling into food crisis, according to the latest Cadre Harmonisé (CH) analysis. The PUSA objective is to enable the recovery and resilience of the most vulnerable and food insecure populations. WFP will support the PUSA implementation for two months (July - August) by distributing cash transfers (e-cash) to vulnerable households located in the semi-arid departments of Podor, Matam and Salémata. In August, WFP finalized PUSA preparatory activities (targeting, training of partners, community discussions, meetings with local authorities, etc.): about 72,000 beneficiaries started receiving seasonal assistance via money transfers (overall WFP plans to distribute 723,130,000 CFA (USD 1.3 million; 5,000 CFA - 9 USD per person). Contracts were signed with cooperating partners Africare and World Vision, to support the operations. Meetings were held with the financial operator Orange to ensure smooth cash transfers.