BY VANESSA GONYE
THE United States government has provided US$15 million additional funding in response to the critical food security situation prevailing in Zimbabwe.
The contribution, provided through the US Agency for International Development (USAid), brings the total funding for the current lean season to US$38 million, ensuring over 600 000 rural dwellers have adequate food supplies before the next harvest.
US ambassador to Zimbabwe, Brian Nichols announced the contribution in response to the United Nations’ Flash Appeal for humanitarian assistance at a Press briefing yesterday.
“The United States is committed to the people of Zimbabwe. We are proud to work with the United Nations, and non-governmental organisations, to deliver this assistance quickly and efficiently to the communities and people who need it most,” Nichols said
“In addition to this emergency response, USAid’s programmes are improving long-term food security for Zimbabwe by building resilience to future shocks. The United States is providing US$144 million over seven years to non-governmental partners, Cultivating New Frontiers in Agriculture and World Vision, to address the underlying causes of chronic food insecurity and malnutrition in rural areas.
“USAid has also provided US$20 million over five years to Fintrac, Inc and Lead Trust to reduce rural poverty and improve food security through increased agricultural production and market linkages for small-scale farmers. This impact is not possible without non-governmental organisations that are capable and committed implementing partners,” he added.
Poor weather conditions in Zimbabwe, that have resulted in erratic rainfall and long dry spells, have exacerbated food insecurity.
An estimated 5,3 million Zimbabweans are facing food insecurity.