SANA’A / ROME – A United Nations World Food Programme (WFP)-charted vessel departed today from the Ukrainian Black Sea port of Yuznhy (Pivdennyi) with wheat grain destined for the agency’s humanitarian response in Yemen.

This is the second maritime shipment of U.N. World Food Programme food assistance to leave Ukraine since the beginning of the conflict in February. The MV Karteria, carrying 37,000 metric tons of wheat grain, will stop first in Turkey, where the grain will be milled into flour. It will then be shipped to Yemen, where over 17 million people are struggling with severe hunger – a figure that is expected to rise in the coming months.

The grain will provide a 110 pound bag of wheat flour to nearly 4 million people for one month and will help the U.N. World Food Programme address immediate gaps in assistance.

“The war in Ukraine has been the last straw in Yemen against a backdrop of prolonged conflict, the resulting economic crisis and dwindling funds for humanitarian response,” said U.N. World Food Programme Representative and Country Director in Yemen Richard Ragan. “It is paramount to get commodities flowing back into the country and especially grain – for humanitarian and commercial purposes. This is vital to keep prices at bay.”

Getting Ukrainian grain to the U.N. World Food Programme’s humanitarian operations in Yemen will ensure a double benefit to both Ukraine’s economy and famine-risk populations in areas of the world hardest hit by the global food crisis such as Yemen. Yemen is particularly reliant on direct imports of wheat flour – a key staple in Yemenis’ diet – from Russia and Ukraine. An estimated 46% of Yemen’s 2021 wheat imports came from Ukraine and Russia.

The deterioration of global food security is caused by multiple factors with the impact of the Ukraine crisis, including the loss of Ukrainian’s grain on global markets as well as the impact on fuel and fertilizer prices, adding further pressure. This has now pushed this number of severely hungry people to a record 345 million in 82 countries.

There is no single solution to the global food crisis, but the unblocking of Ukraine’s seaborne exports will address some global supply disruptions and allow Ukraine to empty its grain storage silos ahead of the summer season harvest. The increasing traffic in and out of Ukraine’s port is a positive signal, but it remains far below pre-conflict averages.

This shipment is the product of strong collaboration between the government sector and the private sector, which is key in our response to the global food crisis. The shipment is possible thanks to generous contributions from USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance and the foundation of Howard G. Buffett, a long-time U.N. World Food Programme supporter who formerly served seven years as a Goodwill Ambassador.

Video is available for use by news organizations. Please contact: marco.frattini@wfp.org

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The United Nations World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian organization, saving lives in emergencies and using food assistance to build a pathway to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change.

YUZHNY / ROME – The first maritime shipment of Ukrainian wheat grain for humanitarian operations run by the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) left Ukraine’s Yuzhny (Pivdennyi) port yesterday. The shipment marks another important milestone in efforts to get much needed Ukrainian grain out of the conflict-hit country, back into global markets and to countries worst affected by the global food crisis.

The shipment of over 50 million pounds of wheat grain will go to the U.N. World Food Programme’s humanitarian response in the Horn of Africa where the threat of famine stalks the drought-hit region. It is one of many areas around the world where the near complete halt of Ukrainian grain and food on global market has made life even harder for families already struggling with rising hunger.

“Getting the Black Sea Ports open is the single most important thing we can do right now to help the world’s hungry,” said U.N. World Food Programme Executive Director David Beasley. “It will take more than grain ships out of Ukraine to stop world hunger, but with Ukrainian grain back on global markets we have a chance to stop this global food crisis from spiraling even further.”

A record 345 million people in 82 countries are now facing severe hunger while up to 50 million people in 45 countries are right on the edge of famine and risk being tipped over without humanitarian support.

With commercial and humanitarian maritime traffic now resuming in and out of Ukraine’s Black Sea port, some global supply disruptions will ease with relief for countries facing the worst of the global food crisis. It will also allow Ukraine to empty its grain storage silos ahead of the summer season harvest.

Despite these positive developments, the world still faces an unprecedented food crisis. Immediate action is needed that brings together the humanitarian community, governments and the private sector to save lives and invest in long term solutions. Failure will cause people around the world to slip into devastating famines with destabilizing impacts felt by all.

This export of wheat is the product of strong collaboration between the private sector – which is key in our response to the global food crisis – and the government sector. The U.N. World Food Programme could not have arranged this shipment without critical emergency funding from USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance, as well as significant contributions from the foundation of the long-time U.N. World Food Programme supporter and former Goodwill Ambassador Howard G. Buffett and Minderoo Foundation, the Australian philanthropic organization of Andrew and Nicola Forrest.

Video is available for use by news organizations. Please contact: Jonathan.Dumont@wfp.org

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The United Nations World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian organization, saving lives in emergencies and using food assistance to build a pathway to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change.

Follow us on Twitter @WFPUSA

KABUL – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) has rapidly deployed food and logistics equipment to support communities devastated by the June 22nd earthquake that struck near the city of Khost. 18 trucks are being deployed to the earthquake-affected areas carrying emergency supplies, including High Energy Biscuits (HEB) and mobile storage units. The U.N. World Food Programme plans to provide emergency food to an initial 3,000 households and is ready to ramp up its support pending results of ongoing post-disaster assessments.

The U.N. World Food Programme – together with humanitarian partners – has been assessing earthquake damage and the needs of families on the ground. The remote districts of Giyan and Barmal in the Paktika province and Spera in the Khost province are among the areas worst hit. In Barmal, more than 70% of homes were completely destroyed. At least 1,000 people have reportedly been killed, with 2,000 others injured. However, rescue efforts have been hampered by heavy rain and winds, as well as poor connectivity in affected areas.

“The Afghan people are already facing an unprecedented crisis following decades of conflict, severe drought and an economic downturn. The earthquake will only add to the already massive humanitarian needs they endure daily, including for the nearly 19 million people across the country who face acute hunger and require assistance. Our teams rapidly mobilized and will continue to provide support to help affected families get through this latest tragedy,” said Gordon Craig, U.N. World Food Programme deputy country director in Afghanistan.

The U.N. World Food Programme works in all 34 provinces of the country and has a fleet of 239 trucks on the road every day, delivering food to some 800 food distribution sites across the country. In May, the U.N. World Food Programme provided 590,000 people in Paktika province and 320,000 in Khost with emergency food and nutrition assistance. Since the start of 2022, the U.N. World Food Programme has assisted 18 million people with food, cash and livelihoods support in Afghanistan.

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The United Nations World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian organization, saving lives in emergencies and using food assistance to build a pathway to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters, and the impact of climate change.

Follow us on Twitter @WFPUSA and @wfp_media

ROME: The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) is working with Uber Technologies Inc, a global mobility and delivery platform, to transport emergency assistance to people in need in urban areas across Ukraine through the use of a custom-built version of Uber’s platform.

With larger vehicles facing issues reaching those in need in built-up areas, collaboration with Uber allows the U.N. World Food Programme to better coordinate, dispatch and track a fleet of smaller vehicles delivering relief items from warehouses to people in need in densely populated areas of Ukraine.

Through this platform, the U.N. World Food Programme can get its food closer to those people needing its support, dispatching deliveries in various sizes of vehicle, tracking each trip to its destination and confirming deliveries have been made safely.

Through this collaboration, the U.N. World Food Programme has already delivered food from its warehouse in Dnipro to other parts of the city, ready for distribution. Further deliveries are also ongoing in other parts of the country, including Lviv, Vinnytsia, Kyiv and Chernivtsi. The progress of deliveries can be tracked in real-time through the platform.

“The U.N. World Food Programme is playing a critical role in providing food and cash assistance to those most affected by the war in Ukraine. This technology helps the U.N. World Food Programme facilitate its response and improves how we serve communities in Ukraine that rely on us,” said Matthew Hollingworth, the U.N. World Food Programme’s emergency coordinator in Ukraine. “It enhances our access to Ukrainian businesses within Uber’s network, making our operations more efficient while also harnessing local capacities.”

“Uber is thrilled to be working with the U.N. World Food Programme to help them more efficiently distribute emergency food relief across Ukraine, by providing free access to a customized version of the Uber platform,” said CEO of Uber Dara Khosrowshahi. “Using our technology, the U.N. World Food Programme can now schedule, dispatch, track and manage deliveries by a network of cars and small vans to final distribution points within a 60 mile radius of U.N. World Food Programme warehouses across the country.”

This work is in addition to a $250,000 donation made by Uber to World Food Program USA to support the emergency response in Ukraine. “We thank Uber for helping us deliver critical humanitarian assistance in Ukraine. Private sector collaborations like this are critical in helping us deploy innovative, custom solutions to address complex challenges,” said President and CEO of World Food Program USA Barron Segar.

The U.N. World Food Programme has rapidly scaled up its operations in and around Ukraine over the past three months. By the end of June, the U.N. World Food Programme will be providing food and cash to more than 3 million people per month in the country.

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About WFP: The United Nations World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian organization, saving lives in emergencies and using food assistance to build a pathway to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change.

Follow us on Twitter @WFPUSA and @wfp_media

About Uber: Uber’s mission is to create opportunity through movement. We started in 2010 to solve a simple problem: how do you get access to a ride at the touch of a button? More than 30 billion trips later, we’re building products to get people closer to where they want to be. By changing how people, food, and things move through cities, Uber is a platform that opens up the world to new possibilities.

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Washington, DC | Feb. 6, 2022 – Our hearts go out to those impacted by Cyclone Batsirai, which made landfall on the east coast of Madagascar on Saturday evening with wind gusts of 146 mph. At least six people are confirmed dead and nearly 50,000 displaced to date. Whole villages are reported to be almost completely wiped out. The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) estimates that as many as 150,000 could be forced to leave their homes. In a double whammy for vulnerable communities, the cyclone comes hot on the heels of Storm Ana two weeks ago, which severely damaged livelihoods, agricultural land, and key infrastructure in Madagascar, Mozambique and Malawi.

World Food Program USA is closely monitoring the unfolding crisis and stands ready to support the U.N. World Food Programme’s emergency response. In anticipation of Cyclone Batsirai, the U.N. World Food Programme pre-positioned 50 metric tons of food to quickly provide assistance. The U.N. World Food Programme is also strengthening its supply chain and IT capacities to support the government’s emergency response.

“We stand committed to the people of Madagascar and will do everything we can to reach vulnerable families in their time of need,” said Barron Segar, President and CEO of World Food Program USA. “But we can’t do it without the support of donors. Please join us as we work to provide urgent relief to storm victims.”

In Southern Africa, where livelihoods and economies are highly dependent on weather fluctuations, frequent climate extremes like cyclones are driving hunger and eroding development. With no time or means to recover, communities rely on humanitarian assistance. In Madagascar, the U.N. World Food Programme helps communities build resilience so they can withstand shocks and protect development. This work is key to mitigating the impacts of increasingly frequent and destructive storms that increase food insecurity.

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The United Nations World Food Programme is the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and the world’s largest humanitarian organization, saving lives in emergencies and using food assistance to build a pathway to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change.

World Food Program USA, a 501©(3) organization based in Washington, DC, proudly supports the mission of the United Nations World Food Programme by mobilizing American policymakers, businesses and individuals to advance the global movement to end hunger. Our leadership and support help to bolster an enduring American legacy of feeding families in need around the world. To learn more about World Food Program USA’s mission, please visit wfpusa.org/mission-history.

Media Contact:
Toula Athas
Director, Communications
tathas@wfpusa.org
202-627-3940

COX’S BAZAR – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) is serving hot meals today to 2,200 refugees affected by a large fire that damaged or destroyed at least 500 shelters in Camp 16 of the Kutupalong refugee settlement.

In the immediate aftermath of the blaze last night, the U.N. World Food Programme and its national NGO partner Resource Integration Centre (RIC) distributed fortified biscuits to 328 families (approximately 1,600 people) who had lost their homes or cooking equipment. Starting today, the U.N. World Food Programme will distribute hot meals twice daily to all the families left with no means to cook until shelters and cooking equipment, including cooking gas, can be restored. Families will then be reintegrated into the regular food assistance program.

“We are deeply saddened to see the extent of the devastation in Camp 16,” said Sheila Grudem, the U.N. World Food Programme’s senior emergency coordinator and head of office in Cox’s Bazar. “Thanks to the partnerships we have with national organizations, UN agencies, retailers and local restaurants, we fortunately have the capacity to provide immediate relief to those who have lost everything and we have all our hands on deck to do so,” Grudem added.

As in the March 2021 fires, the U.N. World Food Programme is also making its suite of digital beneficiary management systems available to humanitarian partners to support the coordination of the delivery of non-food items such as cooking gas, especially to those refugees who have lost their documents in the fire. Volunteers from the U.N. World Food Programme and the inter-agency Site Maintenance Engineering Project (SMEP) are also deployed in the field to support the clearance of debris.

The U.N. World Food Programme’s regular food assistance in Cox’s Bazar provides every refugee family in the camps with an electronic voucher (“e-voucher”) topped up with a monthly allowance of $12 per person per month. Refugees can purchase their preferred foods directly from a network of 22 outlets in the camps managed by Bangladeshi retailers. No U.N. World Food Programme site was damaged by the fire, which will allow affected families to return to the outlets as soon as they have the means to cook.

Cox’s Bazar is the largest refugee settlement in the world, home to almost 900,000 refugees. In a dense mesh of bamboo and tarpaulin shelters, fires are one of many hazards adding to the extreme vulnerability of refugees. In March 2021, 10,000 homes burned down and at least 45,000 people were displaced. Heavy monsoon floods in July 2021 affected 46,000 refugees and caused devastating landslides.

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The United Nations World Food Programme is the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate.  We are the world’s largest humanitarian organization, saving lives in emergencies and using food assistance to build a pathway to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change.

Follow us on Twitter @WFPUSA and @wfp_media

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