CERF allocates US$3.2 million to stem food insecurity in Malawi

31 December 2012: During the 2011 and 2012 agricultural seasons, Malawi experienced widespread dry spells that reduced the production of food crops. 2012 was the fourth consecutive year of limited or no access to food crops due to a high number of natural disasters in the preceding years. The most affected districts were Balaka, Blantyre, Chikhawawa, Mulanje, Neno, Nsanje, Ntcheu, Phalombe and Thyolo.

An estimated 1.97 million people will struggle to meet their minimum food requirements until the next harvest in March 2013. More than 277,000 of those people are children.

In response, the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) has provided a rapid response grant of $3,219,663 to two UN agencies.

The UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has received $1,791,884 to manage acute malnutrition in 16 food-insecure districts. UNICEF will also strengthen current protection systems to monitor, report and refer cases of violence, abuse and human rights violations. By building the capacity of improved and sustainable agricultural practices, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) will strengthen affected households through an allocation of $1,427,779.

The allocations are expected to benefit 1,970,933 people.