Published On: Thu, Oct 8th, 2015

Aid secured for vulnerable Zimbabwe communities

dried maizeHARARE, (CAJ News) – SOME 650 000 people in hunger-stricken Zimbabwe are set to benefit from a donation of $43 million the United Kingdom Government’s Department for International Development (DFID) and United States Agency for International Development (USAID) would jointly launch
to provide immediate support to vulnerable communities in the country.

The fund is part of the agency’s humanitarian assistance programmes.

Working through trusted partners, including CARE and World Food Programme, this support is poised to provide a combination of cash transfers and food aid to the most vulnerable households within these districts to help them through the most food insecure months of the year.

Head of DFID Zimbabwe, Annabel Gerry, said the UK’s first responsibility would always be to protect vulnerable people from shocks, and so it is critical that they provide this assistance to Zimbabwe now. “At the same time, our longer term aim is to build the resilience of the poorest people
to withstand such shocks,” said Gerry.

USAID/Zimbabwe Mission Director, Stephanie Funk, said the United States continued to stand by the people of Zimbabwe during difficult times.

“However, humanitarian assistance alone is not enough. Our partners are working innovatively to help vulnerable Zimbabweans develop the skills and tools to move away from dependency on food assistance and toward self-sufficiency,” Funk added.

Poor weather conditions during the 2014-2015 agricultural season, including erratic rainfall and long dry spells, contributed to large-scale crop failure across the country. As a result, according to the Zimbabwe Vulnerability Assessment Committee, an estimated 1,5 million rural Zimbabweans have been left food insecure at the peak of the hungry season.

Zimbabwe has suffered recurrent food shortages owing to unfavourable weather conditions but critics blame the country’s land reform programme.

– CAJ News

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