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WFP emergency response to Indonesia quake: May 30

Following the Java earthquake, WFP is recommending general food distribution be provided for close to 100,000 people.

Total food aid

WFP estimates $5 million needed for food aid; coordinates food distribution.

On the basis of the just completed UN Inter-Agency Rapid Needs Assessment mission, WFP is recommending general food distribution be provided for close to 100,000 people, with the focus shifting to around 40,000 children under 5, pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers over approximately six months.

Early WFP estimates indicate that approximately US $5 million will be required to meet these short-term food needs.

First donation

Belgium became the first nation to donate to the operation, yesterday announcing a contribution of EURO 500,000 -- more than enough to cover the cost of the US $500,000 WFP has already drawn from its Immediate Response Account to provide 20,000 people with enough food for two months (1 June to 31 July).

The advance is estimated to provide 658 metric tonnes of food (fortified biscuits, noodles, rice and oil).

Lead coordinating role

With more relief food now rolling in from many sources, WFP is taking the lead to coordinate the distribution of food with implementing partners (including local authorities and non-governmental organizations).

WFP is also making an assessment of the logistics and telecommunications needs -- areas in which it is often called upon to serve the entire humanitarian community.

So far the agency has deployed 12 humanitarian response experts to the earthquake affected area, with more on the way.

Distribution

Since the earthquake struck on Saturday morning, 165 tonnes of WFP emergency rations have arrived in the area, of which 90 tonnes have already been distributed to more than 30,000 people in the districts of Bantul and Klaten.

Non-governmental organisations Save the Children UK, World Relief International, IMC and Walhi assisted in food distribution today.

Jogjakarta is generally considered to be one of Indonesia's most prosperous and productive provinces, so the focus will need to be on getting the economy back on track as soon as possible.