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Friday, 16 July 2010

Commission allocates € 5million for short-term food assistance

Today the European Commission has decided to allocate € 5 million to support the protection of livelihoods of vulnerable populations in the disaster-prone regions of south-east African and south-west Indian Ocean. This aid will promote disaster preparedness by providing short-term food security, short-term livelihood support, and other support activities in Comoros, Madagascar, Malawi and Mozambique. The Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response, Kristalina Georgieva said: “Despite the success of our preparedness programmes in disaster-prone areas, the experience shows that natural hazards put at risk not only lives but also livelihoods. For this reason, we are taking our programmes a step further by setting up complementary tools aimed at fostering the population’s food security.”South-east Africa and south-west Indian Ocean are two of the most natural disaster-prone regions in the world. In addition to permanent threats from earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, the region has in recent years experienced a dramatic increase in the frequency of floods and cyclones. This high recurrence of natural disasters has seriously reduced the possibility of sustainable recovery. The principal objective of this new Decision is to link disaster risk reduction to food security actions, with short-term livelihood support and short-term food-security, in order to decrease the vulnerability of communities exposed to the risk of natural catastrophes. Assistance will be provided through multiple interventions such as seeds, tools and livestock support and capacity building activities at household and community level. The funding will also be used to provide coordination and technical support to partner operations, and to finance awareness-raising and advocacy campaigns.