European Union Boosts Resilience in Northern and Western Bahr el Ghazal States
The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) welcomes a €6.1 million contribution from the European Union to strengthen the resilience of vulnerable communities in Northern and Western Bahr El Ghazal states.
The funds will provide a four-year project to transform the livelihoods of 10,000 vulnerable households through capacity building and providing agricultural inputs and tools to increase production, reduce food losses and enhance access to markets.
“The EU infrastructure development programme, for which the EU has mobilised a total of €16 million under the EU Emergency Trust Fund for Africa, complements and builds synergies with previous and current EU-funded interventions in the mentioned states, where priority rural infrastructures have been already constructed and are in use,” said European Union Ambassador Christian Bader.
“This programme not only addresses connectivity and food security, but also fundamental values and issues critical for a sustainable and inclusive socio-economic development such as: promotion of social cohesion, peacebuilding, gender equality, human rights protection, job creation for youths and women, enhanced incomes for poor vulnerable households and, last but not least, environmental safeguards,” he added.
“We are grateful to the European Union for its commitment to supporting vulnerable communities. The empowerment of smallholder farmers is integral to fighting food insecurity and driving economic development,” says Matthew Hollingworth WFP Country Director in South Sudan.
WFP fights food insecurity, restores livelihoods of rural populations, eliminates isolation and inequity in South Sudan through resilience building programmes such as Smallholder Agriculture Market Support (SAMS). SAMS increases agricultural production and productivity, reduce food losses and boost farm-to-market access in areas with agricultural potential and to improve rural connectivity to social services.
In the 2019-2020 harvest, WFP trained more than 10,500 smallholder farmers— 35 percent of whom were women—and distributed over 30,000 post-harvest handling materials. WFP also bought over 677 metric tons of maize, valued at over US$250,000, directly from smallholder farmers.
The European Union is a long-standing WFP partner, supporting its emergency and development work in South Sudan; It has contributed €152 million to WFP’s operations in the country over the past five years.
Photo courtesy of United Nations Photo.