Thursday, April 25, 2024
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HomeOpinionCommentaryHaiti: World Food Programme Annual Country Report 2023

Haiti: World Food Programme Annual Country Report 2023

Key messages

  • World Food Programme (WFP) continued implementing humanitarian and long-term solutions towards Zero Hunger, reaching over 2 million people with direct assistance and indirectly benefitting 210,000 people with assets, capacity and services, as well as 1.2 million people through national policies and programmes.
  • Humanitarian needs skyrocketed due to challenging operational context and are at the highest levels since the 2010 earthquake. Food insecurity remains at concerning levels, with 44 percent of Haitians acutely food insecure. The escalation of violence resulted in 313,901 persons being internally displaced, with 60 percent displaced in 2023.

By WFP

In 2023, Haiti recorded the second “largest deterioration in peacefulness” globally, as reported by the Global Peace Institute, with kidnappings, killings and sexual violence by criminal groups increasing dramatically throughout the year. In October 2023, the United Nations Security Council authorized the deployment of a non-United Nations Multi-national Security Support Mission to assist the Haitian National Police in restoring security in the country.

Amidst the degradation of the socio-political and economic context, food insecurity continued to rise to unprecedented levels due to heightened insecurity and soaring inflation rates, among other factors. The 2023 Humanitarian Response Plan, which was the largest in terms of overall needs since the 2010 earthquake (USD 720 million), allocated the most significant share of its needs (58 percent) to food security.

The latest Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC), covering August 2023 to February 2024, highlighted that 44 percent of the population (4.35 million people) are acutely food insecure (IPC3 or above) [4]. Of these, 1.4 million are in the emergency phase (IPC 4), a slight improvement compared to the previous analysis, which had reported 19,200 people in phase 5 (catastrophic), evidence of the crucial work of humanitarian agencies like WFP.

In this context, WFP stepped up its response, extending the corporate scale-up launched in October 2022 until the end of April 2023. An Inter-agency Standing Committee for scaling humanitarian efforts across the system was also activated in April 2023 and stretched until October. In 2023, WFP reached over two million people (51 percent women and 49 percent men), a 20 percent increase from 2022, distributing a total of 9,000 mt of food and USD 80 million of cash-based transfers (CBT) across all its operations, the latter being almost three times increase compared to 2022 (USD 28.2 million) and a record for WFP in Latin America and the Caribbean. CBT was almost exclusively unrestricted cash, allowing people the flexibility to meet their immediate needs.

To support humanitarian and development actors and the Government, WFP offered on-demand logistics services, including the provision of fuel, transport, storage and maritime transport along the United Nations Humanitarian Air Service (UNHAS). In the context of heightened insecurity, these services were essential to providing vital medical and food supplies in the most remote communities and circumventing armed group-controlled areas.

Despite the challenging operational context and to respond to the humanitarian crisis while promoting long-term solutions supporting the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 2 (Zero Hunger), WFP intensified its efforts to foster greater integration, synergy and complementarity between its interventions.

WFP leveraged its support to social protection systems to provide life-saving emergency assistance through the Fonds d’Assurance Economique Socialeand to implement anticipatory actions through CBT to households in vulnerable conditions ahead of shocks. In line with the humanitarian-development nexus, WFP also supported the transition of emergency activities to longer-term resilience interventions.

Through its emergency response programme, WFP reached 1.26 million people, with USD 43.3 million in CBT, one million hot meals and 2,504 mt of food. WFP also prioritized internally displaced persons and people living at the border with the Dominican Republic who have been repatriated to Haiti and have been impacted by the border closure between the two countries. WFP implemented a specific strategy for the Port-au-Prince metropolitan area, where the highest level of food insecurity across the country was observed (IPC5 from September 2022 to February 2023), specifically in neighbourhoods controlled by armed groups like Cité Soleil, by reaching 102,645 people while striving to promote community acceptance.

Under its school meals programme, WFP provided daily meals to 450,279 students in 1,843 schools, of which 225,927 received locally sourced meals, expanding the home-grown school feeding programme (HGSF). This approach supports the national objective of reaching 100 percent of school meal recipients with locally sourced products by 2030, as articulated in the National School Feeding Policy and Strategy. WFP also promoted synergies between the HGSF and smallholder farmers benefitting from capacity-strengthening activities, such as connecting schools to local producers and strengthening local food systems.

WFP assisted communities in vulnerable conditions in becoming more resilient to shocks by supporting 210,000 people in creating or rehabilitating rural assets and diversifying livelihood strategies. WFP also developed a climate strategy to support communities in vulnerable conditions adapting to climate change.

Furthermore, WFP supported the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labour in implementing adaptive social protection for increased resilience and social safety net, in alignment with the National Social Protection and Promotion Policy. WFP delivered CBT to 23,542 households in vulnerable conditions from 14 communes while expanding the social registry, which covered 26 percent of the population in 2023 [12].

WFP worked with the government to strengthen capacities and ensured its interventions’ alignment with Haiti’s National Strategic Development Plan 2012-2030. This included working with the Ministry of National Education and Vocational Training and the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labour on school feeding and social protection, as well as the National Coordination for Food Security and the General Directorate of Civil Protection on emergency preparedness and response.

At the same time, WFP collaborated with the Ministry of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Rural Development and the Ministry of Public Health and Population. Moreover, WFP prepared a memorandum of understanding with the Ministry of Environment to enhance collaboration across WFP activities, aligning with WFP’s climate strategy.

Following the destruction of the Gonaives suboffice and two warehouses in Les Cayes and Gonaives municipalities in 2022, WFP built a new suboffice and warehouse in Miragoane with a storage capacity of 2,500 mt and office spaces, enabling WFP and United Nations partners to operate effectively in the southern region.

As the country office prepared the new country strategic plan 2024-2028, WFP conducted several consultations with the host government, partners and civil society to inform the plan for the next four years. WFP will intensely focus on localization and support to achieve SDG 2 (Zero Hunger) and SDG 17 (Partnerships for the Goals).

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