The conflict in the Central African Republic (CAR) has driven hundreds of thousands of people from their homes. Food is a priority for these people. Here, at the CASTORS church compound in Bangui, where 12,000 people have taken shelter, two young girls cook rice provided by WFP and donated by USAID, as Housainou Taal, WFP's Representative in CAR, looks on.
These volunteers from the displaced community help unload a truck full of WFP food rations at Saint Joseph Mukasa church in Bangui. Over the past weeks, violence has intensified in CAR, sending ever more people fleeing their homes in fear of increasingly sectarian attacks.
Maaledou Pulcherie, a mother of 10, fled her home in Bangui’s Catin area to come to the Saint Joseph Mukasa church. As well as disrupting lives now, the conflict has forced many farmers to leave their farms, resulting in poor harvests and severe disruption of markets, and raising the risk of further food insecurity in the future.
Even before the recent renewed violence, food security assessments showed that around 30 percent of households, or around 1.3 million people, were food insecure in CAR. These displaced people, at Lycée ABC in Bangui’s Boy Rab area, make sure none of the precious food distributed by WFP goes to waste.
Mother-of-three Prudence Nadege has just received rations from WFP at Lycée ABC in Bangui. This vital food will keep her family going for around 10 days. “Thank you so much! Tonight, all the family will be happy because we have something to eat,” she said. WFP aims to scale up its operations to reach more than 1 million people in 2014, and is counting on donors to support these efforts.
Ephrasie Okonou has just received her food rations from WFP at Lycée ABC in Bangui, and is preparing to cook some rice for her eight children. WFP is giving families rations of maize meal, or rice, split peas, vegetable oil and salt.
After receiving food rations from WFP, these women sit for a moment and discuss what they should cook. As well as helping people in the capital Bangui, WFP is distributing food in Bossangoa in the northeast, and in other locations.
Marie Kpowi, a mother-of-three, cooks sweet potatoes at Saint Joseph Mukasa. She later received WFP food rations to cover her family's needs for 10 days. In this very complex situation, WFP is reaching out to the most vulnerable, distributing food wherever it is possible – hospitals, orphanages, churches and mosques.
2 February 2015 Bridging The Hunger Gap In A Divided City Of Bambari