SANAA The UN World Food Programme (WFP) welcomed a generous US$31.4 million (Euro 23 million) contribution from the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany for its emergency and life saving programmes in Yemen.
The contribution is the largest donation that WFP has ever received from Germany for Yemen in one year and one of the highest ever worldwide. “We are extremely grateful for this incredible show of support in what is an increasingly dire situation,” said WFP Representative in Yemen Lubna Alaman. “This remarkable contribution was perfectly timed as we are embarking on the scaling up of our assistance in response to the growing needs of Yemen.”
Yemen is in the midst of an increasingly complex, full-fledged humanitarian crisis. Recent civil unrest, soaring food and fuel prices and a breakdown in social services have worsened an already critical humanitarian situation.
“Germany has committed itself to supporting WFP in an unprecedented scope in light of the ongoing political crisis which seriously affects the lives of many Yemenis, said Holger Green, the German Ambassador to the Republic of Yemen. “The German Government has decided to use a major part of its regular cooperation budget in 2011/2012 to address the humanitarian crisis in Yemen.”
WFP has scaled up its humanitarian assistance in 2012 to feed 3.5 million vulnerable people who have been pushed into hunger in the wake of sharp hikes in food prices and displacement in the northern and the southern regions of the country. WFP is especially prioritizing 1.8 million severely food insecure Yemenis living in the poorest 14 governorates including 635,000 women and children under the age of five. The estimated total cost of this food assistance is US$207 million.
The German contribution will enable WFP to distribute more than 20,000 metric tons of food commodities such as fortified wheat flour, oil, and specialized nutritional products for severely malnourished children. The contribution will also support WFP’s Food for Girls’ Education programme which provides take-home food rations as an incentive for families to keep girls in schools.
“The ongoing support of Germany goes a long way in helping WFP to respond to the critical food-security crisis and begin to close the hunger gap in Yemen,” said Alaman.