Coordinated action to combat hunger and undernutrition among people living in protracted crises.

Photo credit: FAO

Women in rural Chad make a wind-breaking fence to protect a nearby river.

Global accord demands new approach to hunger and nutrition in protracted crises

Framework for Action seeks coherent humanitarian and development efforts

The Committee on World Food Security (CFS) has approved the world’s first global agreement involving all stakeholder groups on coordinated action to combat hunger and undernutrition among people living in protracted crises.

The Framework for Action on Food Security and Nutrition in Protracted Crises is a voluntary agreement offering guidance to address food security and nutrition needs in these challenging contexts. It also outlines how to adapt to specific challenges in areas persistently wracked by natural calamity and civil conflict.

The Framework comprises 11 principles that recognize the need for coherent and integrated humanitarian and development efforts to address both the immediate and the longer-term food security and nutrition needs of people in protracted crises.

Protracted crises result in disrupted livelihoods and food systems, higher illness and mortality rates, increased displacements, hunger and severe undernutrition.

The prevalence of undernutrition is typically three times higher in protracted crises situations than in the rest of the developing world.

Resilience is the key

“More comprehensive and effective policies and action will emerge as the result of the high-level political commitment the Framework mobilizes”, said Dominique Burgeon, FAO’s Strategic Programme Leader on Resilience.

“Building resilience is a critical element of the Framework for Action. Resilient communities have a greater capacity to absorb, prepare for and prevent crises and long-term stresses,” he said.

That’s a marked shift from focus on short-term solutions, often humanitarian funded, to address long-term problems.

Read the full article: FAO

Author: Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.