November 27, 2018: A new drought response plan will help 1.4 million of the most vulnerable drought-affected people in Afghanistan during the coming winter season and into April next year, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) announced today on the sidelines of the Geneva Conference on Afghanistan (27-28 November).
FAO is working with partner organizations to provide vulnerable farmers in 22 of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces – particularly households headed by women or people with disabilities – with urgently-needed wheat seeds and fertilizers in time for the winter planting season, when much-needed rains are forecast to finally arrive.
FAO’s drought response plan is also intended to help people stay at their places of origin and reduce drought-induced displacements.
“I met many families who had no other option than to sell their oxen to cover their most urgent food needs. These are the oxen they normally use to plough their land,” said Dominique Burgeon, the Director of FAO’s Emergency and Rehabilitation Division and Resilience Strategic Programme Leader.
FAO requires $30 million to carry out this emergency response, said Rajendra Aryal, FAO’s Representative in Afghanistan
“While addressing the current situation is extremely urgent, FAO is also working hard in Afghanistan to diversify livelihoods and improve water management over the longer term. We need to make communities resilient to the growing number of climate-based risks that the country faces,” said Burgeon. “Only in this way can we break the cycle of poverty and hunger and help bring peace,” he added.