COnflict Causes Hunger

When War Hits, Hunger Strikes Harder

Conflict has pushed 158 million innocent people into alarming levels of hunger. We urgently need your help to send them food and save their lives.

How Conflict Drives Hunger

Conflict forces families from their homes, destroys economies, ruins infrastructure and makes food nearly impossible to find or afford. As the recipient of the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize, the United Nations World Food Programme is there before, during and after upheaval to help families survive and recover.


Finally, the combination of destabilization and displacement almost inevitably leads to hunger, which is especially cruel to children. A child living in a country ravaged by violence is more than twice as likely to be malnourished and to be out of school.


When violence erupts, it sends shock waves through the region. Infrastructure is destroyed, imports cease, inflation rates rise, currency devalues, roads are cut off and jobs are lost. All of this makes it exceedingly difficult for people to find enough food.

Where there is conflict there is hunger, and where there is hunger there is often conflict.


Next, when it’s no longer safe at home and people can’t make ends meet, many of them have no choice but to leave – often bringing only what they can carry. Without resources, finding food in isolated, often bleak environments, becomes even harder.

Today, conflict, violence and persecution have driven 80 million people away from their homes, 40 percent of whom are girls and boys under the age of 18.

Photo: WFP

Nearly 60% of the world’s hungriest people live in conflict-affected areas


8/10 of the world’s worst food crises are driven by war, persecution and conflict


80 million people were displaced from their homes by conflict in 2020

Hunger in the World’s Worst Conflict Zones

Democratic Republic of the Congo

With 26.2M severely hungry people, the DRC is the world’s largest hunger crisis. Decades of civil war have left millions dead or displaced. A toxic mix of conflict, displacement, disease, economic decline, natural disasters and COVID-19 has driven the number of people facing hunger to skyrocket in recent years. In 2020, the U.N. World Food Programme assisted almost 6.9M people across the country.

Photo: WFP/Fredrik Lerneryd


Yemen is one of the world’s most dire hunger crises. Over half of the population – 16.2M people – don’t know where their next meal is coming from. This includes 2.3M children under the age of 5 who require treatment for the most severe malnutrition, of which 400,000 are at risk of dying without treatment. The U.N. World Food Programme works day and night to feed 12.9M Yemenis every month with emergency food assistance.

Photo: WFP/Mohammed Awadh


Ten years of war have pushed most Syrians to extreme levels of poverty and hunger. Nearly 7M people are displaced inside the country and another 5.6M have fled to neighboring countries. Syrian children have borne the brunt of the war’s effects, forcing millions of them out of school. The U.N. World Food Programme served 5.7M Syrians in 2020.

Photo: WFP/Hussam Al Saleh

Northeast Nigeria

Conflict and poverty are wreaking havoc in Nigeria. Violence is causing mass movements of people, with 1.75M people living in camps or host communities within Nigeria and tens of thousands seeking refuge elsewhere. In the Northeast alone, 4.4M people are facing severe hunger in the Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states.

Photo: WFP/Arete/Damilola Onafuwa
Imagery for slide 0 Imagery for slide 1 Imagery for slide 2 Imagery for slide 3

How WFP Works in Conflict Zones

See how we sow peace & save lives. The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) faces conflict head-on and goes where others can’t. With your support, we reach the most vulnerable people in the world.

Food Aid

WFP provides lifesaving food and specialized nutrition to the most desperate people in conflict zones. From dried grains and beans to fortified powders and high-energy biscuits, we deliver the right food at the right time.

24 billionmeals were served last year
17 millionpeople received specialized foods to prevent or treat malnutrition
Photo: WFP/Hani Saleh
Cash & Vouchers

Sometimes food is still available during conflict but it’s unaffordable because of inflation. That’s when WFP provides cash-based assistance in the form of food vouchers or debit cards so families can buy food locally.

$2.1 billionwas distributed last year in cash and vouchers
18different food items are typically available for purchase
Photo: WFP/Gabriela Vivacqua/2022
School Meals

In conflict, children are often pulled out of school to help earn money, work around the house or care for younger siblings. Our school meals help keep them in class and provide critical calories they can depend on.

17 millionchildren received school meals, snacks or take-home rations in 2019
60%of all WFP beneficiaries are children
Photo: WFP/Mariama Ali Souley

WFP combines short- and long-term assistance to build back people’s self-reliance. We rehabilitate land, train small-scale farmers, teach job skills and build vital infrastructure like bridges and roads.

$610 millionwas invested in resilience-building activities last year
50,000community assets were constructed or repaired in 2019
Photo: WFP/Jessica Lawson/2021
Photo: WFP/Hani Saleh

Help Save lives today

Your gift to WFP can help deliver life-saving food to families in conflict zones.