Photo: WFP/Simon Pierre Diouf

Burkina Faso

The Situation

ALERT: A rise in armed conflict, deteriorating security, widespread poverty and warmer temperatures are threatening the lives of millions of people across the Central Sahel – comprised of Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger. WFP is on the ground providing lifesaving food. See the full scale of the operation here.

Burkina Faso is a semi-arid Sahel country, with a population of nearly 21 million. Almost half (40 percent) of its population lives below the poverty line. The majority of the population depends on one season of rain-fed agriculture for their livelihoods, leaving the country vulnerable to climate shocks. The rising insecurity continues to deteriorate across all regions of Burkina Faso, resulting in a massive population displacement. As of September 30, 2021, over 1.4 million people were officially displaced.

In 2021, 2.8 million people were expected to be hungry during the summer months. WFP is working to reach 2.5 million people with assistance in 2021.

While progress has been made to decrease undernutrition and food insecurity and increase access to education, further efforts by the Government and its partners are still required. National and regional insecurity, including the ongoing conflict in northern Mali, threaten political stability and economic development in Burkina Faso.

WFP's Work

WFP has present in Burkina Faso since 1967. In partnerships with the Government of Burkina Faso, international and national non-governmental organizations, academia, local communities and the private sector, WFP is contributing to efforts towards achieving SDG 2 (Zero Hunger):

  • Assistance for IDP’s and refugees: Following a rise in violent attacks and increased displacements, WFP provides monthly food or cash assistance to internally displaced persons (IDP’s). WFP also provides Malian refugees residing in the Sahel region with a monthly ration consisting of cereal, beans, oil and cash (about $8 per person per month), depending on economic status.
  • Support to primary education: Since 2004, WFP has been supporting the Government by implementing a school feeding program in the Sahel region. Take-home rations are also a further incentive to attend school activities until they complete at least primary school.
  • Nutritional aid: Despite the difficulties posed by growing insecurity, WFP is implementing activities to prevent and treat malnutrition in children under 5 as well as pregnant and breastfeeding women and girls.
  • Resilience Programs: WFP-supported livelihood opportunities contribute to improving the resilience of individuals and communities to both socioeconomic shocks and the effects of climate change. Support includes the provision of storage technologies, and training on post-harvest losses reduction and food processing. In 2019, WFP introduced a weather index-based insurance in various villages likely to be affected by drought.
  • Food Assistance for Assets: WFP supports the creation of small-scale agricultural assets and provides training on improved agricultural techniques and income-generating activities in rural areas of six regions with high food insecurity and malnutrition.