This Operation has been modified and extended in time until 30th June 2010 as per Budget revision 04 (see below).
At the end of 2008, the Karamoja region of north-eastern Uganda is facing a severe humanitarian crisis, following a drought which has reduced agricultural output to an estimated 30 percent of normal levels. Although Karamoja’s lean season does not traditionally begin until March, global acute malnutrition is already bordering on emergency levels, with some districts recording rates of 12.7 percent in September 2008. With the next harvest not due until October 2009, the situation will deteriorate drastically unless urgent remedial action is taken in the interim. Given the scale of the food security crisis, the Government of Uganda has requested WFP assistance in Karamoja.
In response to the impending disaster in Karamoja, the proposed Emergency Operation (EMOP 10811.0) will fill a critical ‘food gap’ until the harvest of October 2009. The multi-tiered intervention will provide: general food assistance to all food insecure households; and supplementary and therapeutic feeding to treat persons who have already become moderately and severely malnourished, respectively. Reflecting the seriousness of the situation, this operation is more than double in monetary terms than WFP Uganda’s relief activities in Karamoja in 2008.
The overall objective of the intervention is to save lives in Karamoja until the 2009 harvest. However, it will also contribute to prevent a vicious cycle, in which negative coping strategies undermine rural livelihoods and further deteriorate an already precarious security situation. While the proposed emergency operation will respond to the immediate crisis, WFP Uganda’s country programme will, at the same time, help address some of the key underlying causes of food insecurity in the region.
The emergency operation is firmly anchored in the findings and recommendations of a range of baseline assessments and nutrition surveys that have been conducted in Karamoja over the course of 2008, and has been conceived as part of a broader consultative process with the Government at the national, district and local levels. It contributes to the advancement of the Government’s goals, as outlined in their Poverty Eradication Action Plan (PEAP) and the Karamoja Integrated Disarmament and Development Plan 2008-10 (KIDDP). The emergency operation also responds directly to WFP Strategic Objective One (“To save lives in emergencies and reduce acute malnutrition caused by shocks to below emergency levels”) and addresses Millennium Development Goal (MDGs) 1 (“Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger”).