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USAID And WFP Join Hands As Lean Season Sets In Zimbabwe

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) last month contributed US$36.7 million on behalf of the United States of America to help the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) provide food assistance at the peak of the lean season between October and March next year.in the country.

WFP is the world’s largest humanitarian organization, saving lives in emergencies and using food assistance to build a pathway to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change.

Since Zimbabwe’s independence, the United States, through USAID, has contributed over $4.2 billion in assistance to Zimbabwe to increase food security, support economic resilience, improve health outcomes and promote democratic governance.

In a year marked by COVID-19, climatic shocks, food and fuel price hikes, the contribution will help WFP provide assistance to some 700,000 people in eight districts in Zimbabwe: Bikita, Buhera, Chivi, Hwedza, Mangwe, Mt. Darwin, Mudzi and Nkayi.

The latest estimates from the Zimbabwe Vulnerability Assessment Committee (ZimVAC) report, coordinated by the Food and Nutrition Council shows that some 3.8 million people will not have enough cereal to eat during the peak of the upcoming lean season with the contributions from USAID and other donors, WFP will complement the national Food Deficit Mitigation Programme and distribute food in partnership with the Ministry of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare to 3.8 million people.


“The United States of America is ready to assist with US$36.7 million for 2022/23 Lean Season Assistance funding provided by the U.S. Government for the people of Zimbabwe, to break the cycle of relapsing into food crises, USAID is aware that more investments are needed in resilience-building and early warning systems. The chances that Zimbabwean smallholder farmers fall repeatedly into food insecurity decrease if they have access to productive assets and can save, borrow and lend money,” reads the report.

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The Zimvac report also stated that the U.S. Government has also pledged an additional US$9 million towards WFP’s food assistance for assets program in 2023, through this initiative, WFP will provide lifesaving food in exchange for work on community assets like feeder roads, community gardens, dams and irrigation systems.

The community-centered approach also promotes nutrition, gender equality, and social protection.

“The latest contribution brings the total funding from USAID to WFP activities to US$44.2 million for 2022. The United States remains the largest bilateral donor of emergency humanitarian assistance in Zimbabwe,” read the report.

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