Harare – Switzerland has allocated an additional CHF1 million (US$1.1 million) in humanitarian assistance following the UN and the Government of Zimbabwe’s Flash Appeal that was launched at the end of February 2019.
The funding provided through the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) will be used to address the humanitarian needs necessitated by the recent drought and the rise in food insecurity in the country.
The response to the Flash Appeal follows another recent allocation of US$2 million from the Swiss Government in response to Cyclone Idai covering Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Malawi.
According to the Zimbabwe Vulnerability Assessment Committee (ZimVAC) nearly 5.3 million people are estimated to be in urgent need of humanitarian assistance and protection during the 2018/2019 lean season (October – April) and beyond.
The support is being channelled through the World Food Programme (WFP) in selected communities in Masvingo Province and will cover the most urgent food security needs of more than 4,000 households through cash transfers. WFP will also use part of the contribution to target communities with livelihood activities that will effectively address the relationship between humanitarian needs and resilience in the face of recurrent drought and other shocks.
“WFP would like to thank the Government of Switzerland for the continued commitment to support the people of Zimbabwe. This contribution will help us to provide the much-needed, life-saving assistance as well as enhance the resilience of the most vulnerable people in the most affected districts in the country,” said the WFP Representative and Country Director, . Eddie Rowe.
The Ambassador of Switzerland, Niculin Jaeger said, “The Swiss allocation through the WFP will help us to rapidly provide critical food and livelihood support to the most vulnerable people who are hardest-hit during the current drought and economic crises, including children, women and the elderly.”
“This allocation comes on top of a long-term multi-year Rural Resilience Programme in Southern Africa worth $11 million which Switzerland is funding in Zimbabwe, Zambia and Malawi to help deal with chronic food insecurity in the region,” said Ambassador Jaeger.
Switzerland has an ongoing commitment to deliver longer term support to Zimbabwe and the region and in this regarding it is financing a substantial development programme under the Regional Programme for Southern Africa, focusing on HIV/AIDS, Food Security, Youth Employment and Arts and Culture interventions.