The United Kingdom government has availed £4 million (US$5.4 million) to help 110,000 food insecure people living in 8 urban areas.
In a statement, Zimbabwe’s Development Director for the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) said,” Zimbabwe is facing a humanitarian crisis which has been compounded by a deteriorating economy and the COVID-19 pandemic. This extra UK aid support will mean people can feed their families and prevent the crises from escalating. We hope to see other donors step up to the plate with some extra funding to support the people of Zimbabwe through this difficult time.”
These highly vulnerable people, a large percentage of which includes elderly, people with disabilities and child-headed households have been severely impacted by Covid-19 and the support, implemented by the UN’s World Food Programme, will come in the form of monthly cash transfers or electronic vouchers worth 12 USD per person which can be redeemed in supermarkets.
Francesca Erdelmann, Country Director and Representative of the World Food Programme in Zimbabwe said, “We are so grateful for our partnership with the UK’s FCDO. This generous and timely contribution from the people of the United Kingdom will go a long way to relieve the hunger burden on Zimbabwe’s most vulnerable urban population. WFP and the humanitarian community are facing a shortage of funding, and this contribution will ensure we can continue to save lives at this critical time when the grip of COVID-19 on the country is tightening and putting people’s livelihoods on the line.”
According to the most recent national data, 5.6 million people—nearly half of Zimbabwe’s population may be pushed into hunger by its March peak. That includes roughly one-third of the rural population, who are expected to face “crisis” or “emergency” levels of hunger, and 2.2 million hungry urban dwellers.