Afghanistan is one of the priority countries for WFP as more than 7.5 million people are food insecure. Every year through the implementation of various projects, WFP delivers food assistance to millions of Afghans across the country. This includes internally displaced people due to conflict, natural and man-made disasters and malnourished children under five, nursing and pregnant mothers.
“WFP Afghanistan will continue to provide food assistance to vulnerable Afghans. While taking this opportunity to congratulate the new Afghan government under the leadership of Dr. Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai, WFP is committed to work in collaboration with the Afghan administration for Zero-Hunger,” said Claude Jibidar, WFP Afghanistan Country Director.
“As the theme for this year’s World Food Day is ‘Family Farming’, we believe that Family Farmers have an important role in eradicating hunger in their communities. We are pleased and honored to support them at the local level to increase their productivity,” Jibidar added.
Amid several emergencies – both natural and man-made – the United Nations World Food Program (WFP) is marking World Food Day, 16 October, by highlighting both the challenges around the world and the real progress being made toward ‘zero hunger’.
“Every year, we witness hunger’s devastating effect on families, communities and whole economies,” said WFP Executive Director Ertharin Cousin. “But despite horrific crises engulfing entire regions, we are making real progress in the fight to sustainably and durably end hunger and chronic malnutrition. Thanks to the work we do with our partners on emergency preparedness, support to family farmers, nutritional assistance – particularly in a child’s first 1,000 days – and building the resilience of communities to withstand shocks, millions of people are now better able to focus on building a future free of hunger for themselves and the next generation.”
According to The State of Food Insecurity in the World 2014 report, the total number of hungry people in the world is down by 37 million, to 805 million, and 63 countries have reached international hunger-reduction targets before 2015, proof of the progress possible when governments, humanitarian organizations and the private sector come together to make lasting change.
Recent studies have outlined the devastating effect that hunger and under-nutrition can have on the lives of individuals, communities and national economies. Data from a series of studies called the Cost of Hunger in Africa has shown that hunger is capable of reducing a nation’s workforce by 9.4% and national GDPs by up to 16.5%, severely limiting a developing country’s ability to make much needed investments and grow.
This shows why the international community must continue to strive towards a world with zero hunger, a world in which children and families can build their futures and farmers can better provide for themselves and help their communities become self-sufficient, Cousin said.
Every year, WFP marks World Food Day alongside the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) in Rome and offices around the world.
The theme for this year’s World Food Day is “family farming,” one of the many ways WFP is supporting local economies to build self-sufficiency and people to achieve zero hunger in their communities. Here are just a few of the ways WFP is helping an average of 90 million people a year focus on their futures:
- Providing emergency food assistance to people affected by natural and manmade disasters, such as the outbreak of Ebola in West Africa and the civil conflicts in Syria, Iraq, Central African Republic and South Sudan
- Running or supporting school meals programs in remote places, giving roughly 20 million of the poorest children a chance for a brighter future
- Prioritizing the purchase of food in developing countries and from family and small-scale farmers to support local economies
- Partnering with companies and organizations around the world to improve WFP operations, create innovative solutions and raise funds and awareness