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FAO Regional Office for Africa

Improved food security monitoring to accelerate Africa’s development

FAO and UNECA join forces to better support countries in meeting Sustainable Development goals

Seeds storage in Rwanda (Photo: ©FAO)

December 15, 2017, Addis Ababa – The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), in collaboration with the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), stepped up efforts to put in place reliable, timely and effective monitoring of the food insecurity situation for policy guidance in Africa. 

The two institutions ended a five-day training course, from 11th to 15th December, at the UN Conference Centre, Addis Ababa, on monitoring SDG 2 - End Hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture - in line with the framework of the strategic cooperation agreement between the ECA and FAO, in support of food security monitoring in Africa in the framework of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. 

The course aimed to inform and train senior technical officers from international and regional institutions in Africa engaged in food security monitoring and/or assessment on the application of Food Insecurity Experience Scale (FIES) methodology. FIES is one of the tools employed to assess and monitor the prevalence of moderate or severe food insecurity in a given population. It is an experience-based metric scale of food insecurity severity. Its methodology relies on people’s direct responses to questions regarding their access to adequate food. Inspired by evidence from two decades of applications of similar measurement tools. 

“Partnerships are key. The great ambition of the Sustainable Development Goals can only be achieved through cooperation and global partnerships between multiple actors and across a broad range of areas. As mandated, FAO is making efforts to advocate for, facilitate and promote the adoption of the FIES methodology by national governmental institutions and by regional and international organizations”, stated FAO Senior Policy Officer, Koffi Amegbeto.

Oliver Chinganya, Director of ECA Africa Center of Statistics (ACS), welcomed a most timely and relevant training of experts. It would allow partners to monitor progress towards the achievement of SGD2 in a coherent manner. 

Similarly, Carlo Cafiero, Manager of the FAO’s Voice of Hunger project, said the training is meant for experts in partner Organizations to better equip of concerned Organizations to assist African countries to approprietly and effectively monitor the achievement of food security. 

The course covered key concepts of the FIES methodology, including the underlying statistical theory, analytical techniques and framing the indicator within the SDG monitoring process. The outcome of the training is expected to be an important milestone towards meeting one of the key goals of the ECA-FAO strategic cooperation framework, the joint preparation of the Africa Regional Overview of Food Security and Nutrition Report, 2018.

 

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