WFP Zambia Country Brief, January 2021

Situation Report
Originally published


In Numbers

8.07 mt food assistance distributed

US$ 132,603 cash-based transfers made

US$ 1.75 m six-month (February – July 2021) net funding requirements

70,770 people assisted in JANUARY 2021

Operational Updates

In January, WFP assisted 70,770 people, including 15,660 refugees from the Democratic Republic of the Congo with cash and food assistance and 37,258 smallholder farmers through resilience and recovery interventions. Additionally, WFP assisted 17,805 people through nutrition interventions, while 47 people were reached through social protection activities.

Under the COVID-19 response, WFP engaged an additional local financial service provider to pilot cash payments to selected beneficiaries in an effort to enhance cash disbursement and redemption rates by diversifying digital payment platforms. Since July 2020, WFP has assisted 64,393 households (321,965 people) out of the targeted 64,415 households, with each household receiving ZMW 400 (USD 19.07) per month. By December 2020, some 23,900 households in Lusaka, Kafue and Chilanga districts received their full payments for the planned six months, while the remaining 40,500 households will continue to receive assistance until April 2021.

As of January, WFP transitioned to cash-based transfers (CBT) for 94 percent of the refugee population in the Mantapala Refugee Settlement; 15,126 refugees from the targeted 5,000, who were also reached in 2020. Over ZMW 2.8 million (USD 132,600) has been distributed, with each refugee receiving ZMW 187 (USD 8.8). The transfer value was increased in January 2021 from ZMW 155 (USD 7.4) due to higher food prices. The remaining 534 refugees who could not be transitioned to CBT (such as households headed by children aged below 16 years, people without identification documents, and those who had temporarily left the settlement or do not have registered SIM cards) continued to receive food transfers. A total of 8.07 mt was distributed in January.

WFP provided farming inputs to 10,454 smallholder farmers in Kalomo, Sioma and Shang’ombo districts to support them in recovering from the effects of the 2018/2019 drought. In the 2020/2021 farming season overall, WFP has assisted 29,212 smallholder farmers in five districts (Gwembe, Sioma, Shang’ombo, Kalomo and Monze), distributing droughttolerant and nutrient-dense farming inputs including cowpeas, sorghum, orange maize and cassava cuttings.

WFP supported the Ministry of Agriculture (MoA) and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) in training lead farmers and camp extension officers to effectively monitor and help smallholder farmers adopt conservation agricultural practices to optimise yields. Additionally, WFP supported the development of a sorghum production monitoring plan under the Sorghum Outgrower Scheme, which is jointly implemented by WFP and Zambian Breweries (ZB) in Gwembe and Pemba districts.
Through this collaboration, WFP and ZB have engaged and provided inputs and technical support to 1,000 smallholder farmers to enhance sorghum production with a guaranteed market offered by the company.

WFP started piloting in three districts (Namwala, Monze and Kapiri-Mposhi) the redeveloped Virtual Farmers Market’s (VFM), an e-commerce digital platform to enable farmers and buyers exchange market information and trade surplus commodities.
Once fully deployed, the enhanced e-commerce market platform will increase smallholder farmers’ linkages to sustainable markets.

To enhance nutrition education and promote vegetable production for diversified school meals, WFP supported the Ministry of General Education (MoGE) to finalize the setting up of three hydroponics gardens at three schools in Gwembe District.
Moreover, WFP re-trained 12 hydroponics gardens focal points in four districts (Nyimba, Petauke, Katete and Lundazi) to enhance crop management and pest control.

As schools are resuming the 2021 school calendar, WFP assisted the MoGE in developing a tracking system to facilitate the monitoring of food deliveries to schools under the national Home-Grown School Meals programme. This system was set up while a web-based Food Tracking System developed in 2020 was being piloted in 10 schools in Mumbwa District before scaling up to additional 120 schools in 12 districts later in the year.

WFP, in collaboration with the National Food and Nutrition Commission (NFNC), continued to implement nutrition activities in churches through trained religious leaders to raise awareness on healthy diets and promote the consumption of nutritious foods among communities. During the month, 378 congregants were reached with nutrition messages in Mumbwa and Petauke districts. In addition, using social media and the dedicated website, WFP and NFNC continued to promote the Good Food Logo – a front of pack certification mark for food products meeting set nutrition criteria that should enable consumers make better food choices.