Statement From WFP USA CEO on Mobilization of Aid for Nicaragua as Hurricane Eta Pounds the Country

November 3, 2020

WASHINGTON, DC (November 3, 2020) – As powerful Hurricane Eta makes landfall along the northern Caribbean coast of Nicaragua, the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), at the request of Nicaragua’s government, is deploying staff and resources to provide emergency support, including food assistance, telecommunications and logistical support to the government. As part of its logistics support, the U.N. World Food Programme is providing mobile warehouses, pre-fab offices, generator, radio and satellite systems to support local operational centers. The U.N. World Food Programme has positioned 80 metric tons of food assistance in the region. The Category 4 hurricane, with winds of 240 km/h, has dumped heavy rain, caused flooding, and damaged homes, agricultural fields, roads and power lines.

Working closely with the Nicaraguan government, the U.N. World Food Programme will support damage and needs assessments and will provide emergency telecommunications support to the National System of Prevention, Mitigation and Disaster Assistance (SINAPRED).

Hurricane Eta has unleashed heavy rainfall and intense winds, knocking out power, causing flooding and tearing corrugated metal roofs off homes in one of the country’s poorest regions. Nicaragua’s Caribbean coast has a population of approximately 520,000 and is home to over 320 indigenous communities, many located alongside riverbanks, with low levels of infrastructure, limited access to basic services and lack of coping capacities. The Caribbean Northern Region is mostly inhabited by indigenous Miskito and Mayagna communities, and Afro-descendants, who are among the poorest and most vulnerable communities in Nicaragua. Their main livelihoods are fishing and agriculture. About 40% of the people in the Caribbean Coast live in poverty and many more can be easily thrown below the poverty line.

World Food Program USA stands by the communities impacted by the hurricane and pledges to do all we can to support the U.N. World Food Programme’s emergency response in the region.

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World Food Program USA (WFP USA) is the recognized leader in America’s pursuit to end global hunger, inspiring citizens to do everything in their power to create a zero-hunger world. We work with U.S. policymakers, corporations, foundations and individuals to generate financial and in-kind resources for the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) to feed families in need around the world and to develop policies necessary to alleviate global hunger. To learn more about our mission, please visit us at www.wfpusa.org.

Media Contact: 

Toula Athas
Director, Communications
World Food Program USA
tathas@wfpusa.org
202-627-3940