WFP/Francesca Caponera

The Situation

Algeria has been hosting refugees from Western Sahara since 1975. These refugees are located in camps in the harsh, isolated desert environment of western Algeria, where opportunities for self-reliance are limited, forcing them to depend on humanitarian assistance for their survival.

Despite continued negotiations, there is little sign of a durable solution to the political stalemate and encampment remains the only feasible option for the Sahrawi refugees in the foreseeable future. The political status quo is fueling anxiety and disillusionment, especially among the young population, which could lead to increased insecurity and tensions in the sub-region.

World Food Programme's Work

WFP has been working in Algeria since 1986 and focuses on three key areas:

  • General food distribution: WFP provides more than 125,000 monthly basic dry food rations that contain a caloric value of around 2,166 kcal per person per day.
  • Nutrition: WFP combines prevention and treatment approaches to address anemia, stunting and nutrition among children under age five, and pregnant and lactating women, targeting 22,500 individuals through 29 nutrition centers.
  • School meals: WFP distributes mid-morning snacks, in the form of milk, fortified biscuits and dates in 40 schools to 32,500 primary schoolchildren. The goal is to maintain enrollment and retention of refugee children. WFP plans to integrate 8,000 kindergarten pupils into this activity in 2016.