The European Union (EU) has given the World Food Programme (WFP) 5 million Euros to provide cash assistance to 655,000 food-insecure people, in urban areas in Zambia, a release emailed to Xinhua on Wednesday said.
The vulnerable communities have been strongly affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19 and would struggle to get by over the new few months without any support.
“COVID-19 has disrupted the ability of thousands of poor city families traditionally reliant on daily labour and informal trading to earn a living. With food prices on the rise, the constant struggle to meet basic needs is now much tougher and become more so,” Jennifer Bitonde, WFP Representative in Zambia said in the release.
While the WFP has been reaching poor families in parts of Lusaka, the country’s capital and Kafue town, south of the capital, the EU financial boost will enable the inclusion of two more cities, Livingstone in the southern part of the country and Kitwe on the Copperbelt Province, according to the release.
Each beneficiary family will receive 400 Zambian Kwacha (about 18 Euros) a month for six months to help cover their food needs.
Pascal Mounier Head of EU’s Humanitarian Aid Regional Office in Kinshasa, the Democratic Republic of Congo said the organization was stepping up efforts to continue providing help where it was most needed, adding that the financial assistance to the WFP demonstrates its solidarity with the most vulnerable people in Zambia who were bearing the brunt of pandemic.
Jacek Jankowski, EU Ambassador to Zambia said the organization will continue supporting better nutrition, health and education for those in need in the current challenging times, adding that the EU has put special emphasis on Zambia’s economic recovery and resiliency building.