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The recent drought in the Sahel has decreased cereal and fodder production, leading many families to rely on markets to access both food for themselves and feed for their livestock. FAO is providing the necessary seeds and tools that will help restore agricultural production throughout the country. Cyclical drought and chronic poverty have negatively impacted the agriculture and livestock sector, and FAO is working to strengthen the livelihood capacities of the rural population to ensure they are able to fulfill their basic needs.
Responding to the crisis
Agricultural production in Chad is too low to cover the food needs of vulnerable families. FAO is providing vegetable and fodder seeds, as well as fertilizer and equipment for processing. Many pastoralists in Chad do not enter transhumance. This means that those who are in areas with heavy fodder deficits face a higher risk of livestock starvation and death, contributing to the reduction in their production capacity, and consequently their purchasing power. To prevent these losses, FAO is providing emergency feed and reinforcing local market access to sell animal products, so that these pastoralists do not lose their capital.
The various crises in the region ,have led thousands of returnees in the eastern part of the country to lose their productive means and capital during displacement. FAO is providing good quality seeds and tools to reinforce their production capacity and ensure they will be able to provide for themselves.
Focusing on women
Women are particularly vulnerable as they do not always have access to agricultural land, and have fewer income generating activities. FAO supports the promotion of garden agriculture to improve nutrition by increasing a family’s food consumption and providing additional income to these households. FAO is distributing seeds, tools and fertilizer, as well as goats to women in order to improve their production, and sell their surplus. Many households in Chad are suffering from malnutrition, which is the combined result of food unavailability, food inaccessibility resulting from chronic poverty and little understanding on nutrition. FAO works on landscaping home gardening perimeters to give woman access to land and also support training on nutrition. Nutrition education is essential since many diets are primarily based on cereal, with very little vegetable diversification.
Supporting coordination and information systems
Chad has an information gap in timely food security data availability that slows down response preparation and does not allow for timely quality actions. FAO is involved in building an efficient food security information system based on national and local capacities in order to assess humanitarian needs early enough to provide relevant and efficient assistance. Strengthening food security information systems is necessary to avoid delays in the humanitarian response. Delays in appropriate responses to the crisis will also be reduced through better response coordination within the humanitarian community.