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CARE International Appeals for $35 Million to Avert Hunger Crisis in Zimbabwe

The world is facing a worsening hunger crisis, with millions of people suffering from severe food insecurity and malnutrition

In the wake of the devastating El Nino-induced drought in Zimbabwe, CARE International has issued a plea for urgent assistance to help the 2.7 million people facing food insecurity in the country.

In an interview with journalists in Harare, CARE International Zimbabwe country director Patrick Sikana said the funds will be allocated to immediate food assistance, protection of existing gains, and long-term recovery efforts

“We are looking at an initial response of approximately $35 million USD that we need to invest in interventions. We don’t have the money currently, so we are reaching out to donors, partners, well-wishers, and friends of Zimbabwe to help us raise that amount of money to deploy into what we consider will be three areas to avert hunger.

“We want to provide either cash or food for people to survive. Secondly, we want to invest in protecting the gains made so far. We have been implementing programs which are now at risk of having the gains reversed. So, how do we protect those gains in terms of assets that communities and households have to be able to pull through?

“The last thing is building back better; how do we get the communities to bounce back and get back on the path towards resilience. If we add the longer-term component of recovery, we are looking at between $35 and $40 million of the plans that we have as a country office. I think it’s going to be an ongoing process,” Sikana said

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While CARE Zimbabwe has received some resources, Sikana noted that they are far from their target.

“We have confirmed close to $3 million of the target. We expect more to come as the process goes. The funds do not come at the same time, but we are very optimistic.”

Sikana also addressed the rising food prices and inflation, acknowledging the additional challenges they pose. “In general, we know there is a warming in food prices,” he said.

He said CARE International is ready to respond to the crisis across Zimbabwe.

“We are still waiting for the actual numbers but we are working with the figure of 2.7 million as a planning figure. With that resource, we must be able to impact more than 20% of the affected population,” he said.

In terms of geographical reach, Sikana assured that CARE Zimbabwe is prepared to respond wherever the need is greatest.

“We are present in Manicaland, Masvingo, Matebeleland South, and North. But we are available to go anywhere in this country where there is a confirmed need for food aid,” he said.

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