The UN World Food Programme (WFP) said today it's only funded at 27 percent of required resources to feed the hungry in Central African Republic. Over one million people are in desperate need of food aid as violence has escalated in the country in recent months.
In a report released today, WFP said, "It is not only the amount of funding, but the timing that is critical." Starting in May heavy rains flood out any roads making it impossible to move food. Aid must be positioned ahead of the rainy season.
During this same time period, food stocks are lowest between the harvests. Many farmers lost farming land because of the conflict.
The fighting in the Central African Republic has also forced WFP to airlift more food as some roads are unsafe to travel. This has increased the cost of the relief operation making funding even more crucial.
WFP's regional director Denise Brown says, “We are launching these airlifts at a high cost but we have no choice. It is vital for us to be able to meet immediate needs for life-saving food for people affected by violence while we replenish WFP stocks in remote places during the lean season and before the rainy season.”
In Bangui, WFP says there is a high prevalence of severe acute malnutrition making the use of Plumpy'Sup for infants vital. This food can save from small children from the physically and mentally damaging effects of malnutrition. Without new funding this food may not be available in the upcoming months.
WFP has a relief fund for the Central African Republic.