DAR ES SALAAM
Tanzania (Xinhua ) -- The United
Nations World Food Programme (WFP) on Sunday appealed for 23.6
million U.S. dollars from now through to December this year to
be able to continue meeting the food and nutritional needs of
refugees in Tanzania.
The world’s largest humanitarian
agency fighting hunger worldwide said in a statement that it has
been forced to reduce food rations for 320,000 refugees in
Mtendeli, Nduta and Nyarugusu Camps in northwest Tanzania as a
result of funding shortfalls.
WFP provides refugees, primarily from Burundi and the
Democratic Republic of the Congo, with five food commodities of
maize meal, pulses, super cereal, vegetable oil and salt.
"Due to funding shortages, all five commodities were reduced
for the August distribution, reaching only 62 percent of the
2,100 required kilocalories which is the recommended daily
calorie intake," said the statement.
"Without an immediate response from donors, further ration
cuts will be necessary as food stocks are simply running out,"
said WFP Tanzania Country Representative Michael Dunford.
"While WFP appreciates the support received so far, we are
urgently appealing to donors to quickly come to the aid of the
refugees and provide additional funding so that we can return to
full rations and avoid any prolonged negative impacts."
The statement said reducing rations result in far-reaching
and potentially life-altering consequences for refugees.
Cutting the intake of kilocalories and nutritional support
can lead to acute malnutrition and increased vulnerability to
disease, it said.
In addition to the five food items, WFP also provides hot
meals for refugees upon arrival, supplemental rations for
pregnant and nursing women and food assistance to hospital
in-patients and people living with HIV/AIDS, said the statement.
It added that hot meals for refugees entering the country and
supplementary feeding programmes remain unaffected by the
current ration reductions.