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USAID Donation Boosts WFP Assistance To Refugees From Myanmar In Cox's Bazar

DHAKA -  The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) has confirmed a vital contribution of US$1.5 million from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) to continue food and nutrition support to up to 31,000 refugees in south-eastern Bangladesh.

The donation will enable WFP to continue its work to improve food security and reduce undernutrition among registered refugees living in Kutupalong and Nayapara in Cox’s Bazar until the end of 2012.

“These refugees are almost totally reliant on outside assistance for their daily food needs and are a priority for us,” said Christa Räder, WFP Representative in Bangladesh. “This generous contribution from the United States will allow us to continue providing this essential support.”

Since 1992, WFP has provided food assistance to registered refugees who fled to Bangladesh from Northern Rakhine State in Myanmar. More than half of all refugee households suffer high levels of food insecurity. Sixteen percent of children under-5 suffer from acute malnutrition, above the 15 percent emergency threshold, and half the refugee children under-5 are chronically malnourished.

WFP provides a general ration to meet basic food needs and nutrition support, including blanket supplementary feeding for pregnant and nursing women and children aged 6-23 months. Moderately undernourished children aged 24-59 months are also provided with a take home supplementary feeding ration. In addition, WFP provides fortified biscuits to children in primary schools, pre-schools, older children enrolled in non-formal primary education and adolescents attending literacy classes.

In 2011, WFP was able to protect the food and nutrition security of 23,965 Rohingya refugees through a fortnightly general food ration; delivered school feeding to 6,325 school children and adolescent literacy learners; supported the recovery from moderate acute undernutrition of 1,939 pregnant and nursing women and 946 moderately undernourished children aged 6-59 months, and provided preventive blanket feeding support to 896 children aged 6-23 months.

WFP remains committed to providing a full food ration to refugees, who are not permitted to work and whose livelihood opportunities are very limited.

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For more information please contact:
Annica Ojermark, WFP/Bangladesh, Tel. +880-2-8116344 or 8119064-73 ext. 2164, Email: annica.ojermark@wfp.org
Farina Noireet, WFP/Bangladesh, Tel. +880-2-8116344 or 8119064-73 ext. 2143, Mob. + 88–01711859476, Email: farina.noireet@wfp.org