Photo: WFP/Evelyn Fey/2021



The country of Chad has a population of over 16 million people


1.7 million people are estimated to be hungry during the lean season


Chad hosts the largest number of refugees (561,000) in West Africa

The Situation

Chad is a landlocked country in central Africa, with one of the highest levels of hunger in the world. 42% of its population live below the poverty line. Chad ranks very low in the Global Hunger Index (113th out of 116 countries) and the Gender Inequality Index (160th out of 162 countries). Regional conflicts combined with environmental degradation, rapid desertification and inter-communal tension over natural resources continue to exacerbate hunger and poverty in the country. The country is among the world’s most vulnerable to climate change, posing additional problems for the vast number of households that rely on agriculture and livestock for their livelihoods.

Chad is affected by internal and external population movements driven by conflicts in the region. The country hosts the largest refugee population in the Sahel: 561,020 people, including Sudanese in the east, Central Africans in the south, Nigerians in the province of Lac and a recent influx of Cameroonians in the capital and surrounding areas. Additionally, there are 406,573 internally displaced persons (IDPs) around Lake Chad and 107,000 Chadian returnees in the province of Lac and the South of the country. The presence and critical needs of these populations put additional pressure on Chad’s already limited resources.

1.7 million people are estimated to face hunger from June to September of this year. These results indicate a third consecutive year of severe food insecurity and the worst lean season of the last 10 years.

WFP's Work

WFP has been present in Chad since 1968. Today, WFP’s work in the country ranges from emergency activities to long-term, resilience programs. In WFP’s mission to end food insecurity and malnutrition in Chad, the agency continues to work alongside the government and other United Nations agencies and partners.

  • Food and cash assistance: WFP is aiming to support approximately 3 million vulnerable people affected by chronic hunger and climate-related disasters in 2022. WFP provides cash-based transfers to enable internally displaced people to buy food from local markets and boost the economy.
  • Support for refugees, IDP’s and host communities: WFP provides food and nutritional assistance to over 530,000 refugees from Sudan, the Central African Republic (CAR), Nigeria and Cameroon as well as 230,000 displaced persons in the Lake Chad province. In support of the government’s National Response Plan for the lean season, WFP is aiming to assist 820,000 people in the Sahelian belt from June to September 2022.
  • Nutrition: WFP supports the Ministry of Health in the coordination of nutrition activities and the implementation of moderate acute malnutrition healthcare. WFP provides nutrition support to babies aged 6 months to 2 years to prevent malnutrition, children under the age of 5 to treat malnutrition, and pregnant and breastfeeding women for nutritional support. In 2021, WFP reached 458,000 children and 235,400 pregnant and nursing women with specialized nutritious foods to prevent or treat acute malnutrition or address vitamin and mineral deficiencies.
  • School Meals: WFP supports the Ministry of Education, regional and local educational authorities, schools and communities with technical assistance and provides school meals to preschools and primary schools. WFP also provides an emergency school meal program in the Lake Chad region. In 2021, WFP school meals reached a total of 200,000 schoolchildren.
  • Long-term projects: WFP has continued to scale up its integrated resilience program and reached nearly 486,000 people in more than 211 villages across the Sahel. Since the beginning of the scale-up in 2018, together with the communities and partners, WFP has rehabilitated nearly 6,425 acres of degraded land and created some 1,00 acres of gardens to produce fresh vegetables and fruits.

WFP manages the UN Humanitarian Air Service (UNHAS) on behalf of the humanitarian community in Chad, with 21 destinations throughout the country served by four aircraft carrying personnel and light cargo. UNHAS is a critical enabler of humanitarian and development assistance in Chad. In 2021, a total of 105 humanitarian organizations and 10,600 passengers relied on UNHAS to carry out their vital work in Chad.

Learn more about the hunger emergency and WFP’s work in the Sahel.