WFP Zimbabwe Country Brief, January 2019


In Numbers

2,399 mt of food assistance distributed

US$4.5m cash-based transfers made

2,000 mt of sorghum locally procured

US$31.5m six months (Mar–Aug 2019) net funding requirements, representing 67% of total

7.5m people in rural and urban areas food insecure (ZimVAC analysis January 2019) 706,247 people assisted in January 2019

Operational Updates

• A country-wide stay-away and demonstrations witnessed in Zimbabwe during the month of January, against high prices of basic commodities following the announcement of increased fuel prices, raised security concerns which resulted in disruption of activities; some distributions for Lean Season Assistance (LSA) and refugees spilled over into February.

• The January LSA cycle planned to assist 686,000 through both in-kind assistance and cash-based transfers. Cash-based transfers are still being done through the distribution of physical cash (Cash-inTransit or CIT) in order for those assisted to extract maximum value from their assistance. Of the 24 districts reached in January, 18 received cash assistance complemented with an in-kind ration of vegetable oil and/or Super Cereal (a specialised nutritious product for households with children under the age of five); the remaining six districts received a full in-kind ration.

• WFP in partnership with UNDP and DFID signed a £3.95 million agreement to provide cash-based food assistance to some 116,000 highly food insecure people, including 97,000 in rural areas and 19,000 in the Harare suburb of Epworth, in a pilot urban programme.

• The start of the urban pilot was affected by January’s shutdown and civil unrest; the programme will now commence in February.

• In partnership with the Ministry of Health and Child Care, WFP assisted 4,662 people under its Nutrition activities. WFP implemented the Prevention of Stunting programme in Mutasa District with its partner Plan International, and continued to provide nutrition support to women awaiting delivery in maternity waiting homes through a partnership with UNFPA.

• As part of measures for supporting market linkages for farmers, WFP Zimbabwe finalised the procurement process of 2,000 mt of sorghum of local origin, that will constitute part of WFP’s regional prepositioned stock available for sub-Saharan countries in times of emergencies and increased demand.

• The LSA and Food Assistance for Assets (FFA) programmes partnered to support communities of Ward 6 in Mwenezi district with assistance to increase the holding value of their weir dam and carry out protection works on their assets created in 2015, as well as the construction of a dip tank during the lean season assistance window. This community-driven initiative provides immediate food relief while work is carried out to address their future needs.