JAPAN has handed over $1 million towards a food security, nutrition and health programme in order to mitigate the effects of drought and floods on communities in Tsholotsho through a comprehensive set of health, nutrition, food security and WASH (water, sanitation and hygiene) interventions.
BY TATENDA CHITAGU
Unicef and the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), in collaboration with the government are implementing the project.
The official handover of the project-set to benefit 130 000 people across 11 drought and flood-affected districts over the course of a year, was held at Tsholotsho Hospital yesterday.
Japanese Ambassador to Zimbabwe Toshiyuki Iwado said the project was meant to cushion rural women and children, who are the worst affected by climate change and food shortages.
“Women in rural areas play a vital role in growing as well as cooking food for their families, and children are the ones who are going to inherit Zimbabwe in the future.
Therefore, it is essential to ensure that the needs of rural women are met,” he said.
Unicef Representative Mohamed Ayoya said building resilience in drought- and flood-affected communities ensured that vulnerable children and women have long-term solutions to favourable food security and health outcomes.
Apart from Tsholotsho, the WFP and Unicef are also partner implementers in Mutoko, Centenary, Mbire and Mt Darwin districts where they have a borehole rehabilitation programme.
“Access to clean and safe water is essential for food and nutrition security,” said WFP Representative and country director Eddie Rowe. “We cannot achieve Zero Hunger unless we also invest in WASH.”
WFP is also implementing the Food Assistance for Assets programmes that consists of construction and habilitation of weir dams.