Teaming up against hunger in the Horn of Africa

The final report from the task force on long-term strategy for the Horn of Africa will be presented at a UN meeting on Friday


When the heads of 26 United Nations organizations gather in New York for a meeting of the United Nations Administrative Committee on Coordination (ACC) on 27 October, one of the issues they will focus on is hunger in the Horn of Africa.

To help break out of the region's cycles of hunger, which afflict around 70 million people, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan in April established an inter-agency task force with a mandate to develop a strategy for responding to the region's long-term food security problems. Since then the task force has consulted extensively with governments, civil society and non-governmental organizations, donors and UN agencies to develop a series of recommendations, incorporated into a final report.

At the ACC meeting, FAO Director-General Jacques Diouf, chairman of the task force, will present the final report.

Horn of Africa web site
News & Highlight article: Strategy to end hunger in the Horn of Africa (31 October 2000)
Horn of Africa - FAO Special Alert (18.04.00)
FAO Appeal for the Horn of Africa
Database on Eastern Africa

25 October 2000

Communication for Development -- New CD-ROM out




Knowledge and information are essential for people to respond successfully to the opportunities and challenges of social, economic and technological changes. But to be useful, knowledge and information must be effectively communicated to people.

The FAO Communication for Development Group has now collected a selection of its publications on a CD-ROM, covering a wide range of topics related to communication for development in many countries.

The publications on the CD-ROM are in their original language, but summaries of each publication are provided in English, French and Spanish. The publications can be searched by title, keyword, etc.

The CD-ROM can be a useful tool for helping policy makers, planners, educators, extension workers and others use communication to inform and educate people about new ideas and technical innovations in agriculture as well as how to take action and encourage behaviour change.

The CD-ROM Communication for Development can also be accessed through the Internet.

The CD-ROM Communication for Development on-line
Communication for Develpoment Group in Extension, Education and Communication Service (SDRE)
More information: Contact Senior Officer Loy Van Crowder, Communication for Development Group (SDRE)

20 October 2000

World Food Day on the BBC

In recognition of World Food Day, BBC World television have broadcast a special edition of the "Earth Report", a weekly feature produced by the Television Trust for the Environment (TVE). The special report, called "Food Works", is part of TVE's multi-media project, "Hands On" and contains five, five-minute long stories that profile FAO field projects. Each one focuses on a small, community-based project that has helped raise the nutrition standards and incomes of rural families in developing countries. Included in the Earth Report's World Food Day special were the following features:

  • "Radio Lang An Le" - In Vietnam, FAO works with local volunteers and a community radio station to spread the word about the benefits of growing a variety of different vegetables.

  • "The Knowledge" - In refugee camps in Tanzania, FAO is involved in a pilot project that helps refugees set up small household vegetable gardens.

  • "Shortage to surplus - surviving Mitch" - In Honduras, a FAO rural development project has succeeded by placing the emphasis on grass-roots participation.
    Go to FAO Focus: A rural development success story in Honduras

  • "A jab in time" - In Vietnam, FAO trains small-scale farmers in bee-keeping and livestock breeding.

  • "Safe saving" - In Madagascar, FAO assists rural men and women find safe ways of protecting their hard-earned income and improving their access to credit.
    Go to News & Highlights story: Safeguarding Deposits

"Food Works" was on air on 16 October at 21:30 (GMT) and was rebroadcast at different times throughout the following week. For more information about "Food Works", click here.

TVE's Earth Report's regular schedule on BBC World
(all times GMT)


Monday 16.10: 21.30

Tuesday 17.10: 05:30, 08:30, 11:30 & 14:30

Wednesday 18.10: 01:30

Saturday 21.10: 18:30

Sunday 22.10: 07:30

Monday 23.10: 03.30

16 October 2000

Meet FAO's Ambassadors


Four FAO ambassadors: singer Dee Dee Bridgewater, singer Miriam Makeba, Nobel Prize winner Rita Levi Montalcini and actress Gina Lollobrigida


A new Web page highlighting the activities of FAO's Ambassadors Programme has gone on line.

The Programme began in 1999, with the appointment of four FAO ambassadors -- singers Dee Dee Bridgewater and Miriam Makeba, actress Gina Lollobrigida and Nobel Prize winner Rita Levi Montalcini. This year, two more FAO Ambassadors was appointed: Chinese actress Gong Li and Senegalese singer Youssou N'Dour.

The programme's goal is to attract public and media attention to the unacceptable situation that more than 800 million people continue to suffer from chronic hunger and malnutrition in a time of unprecedented plenty.

Each of the four Ambassadors has made a personal and professional commitment to speak out on the universal humanitarian issues that underpin FAO's mission: to build a food-secure world for present and future generations. Using their talents and influence, the Ambassadors are working to draw as many people as possible into FAO's campaign against world hunger.

On the new Web page you can see, hear and read about each of FAO's Ambassadors and the Programme.

FAO's Ambassadors Programme: Celebrities support the fight against hunger

13 October 2000

New CD-ROM on post-harvest operations

Every year, developing countries lose millions of tonnes of food as a result of inadequate handling and storage, pest damage and problems in transport and marketing. The Information Network on Post-harvest Operations (INPhO) was created in 1998 to assist developing countries in improving food security by reducing post-harvest losses. INPhO has just released the second version of its CD-ROM, which offers information to users working in agricultural production.

The CD-ROM gives users access to INPhO's extensive virtual library and image gallery. They can also find out who's doing what in the area of post-harvest technology through INPhO's "Who's Who" database.

Looking for a new recipe to try out on friends? The INPhO Cookbook, a database of recipes of traditional dishes from around the world is also included on the new CD-ROM.

INPhO was developed by FAO's Post-harvest Management Group in close collaboration with the International Cooperation Centre on Agrarian Research for Development (CIRAD) and the German Agency for Technical Cooperation (GTZ). It also has the support of seven other international institutions gathered under PhAction, a global post-harvest forum whose members share and distribute information on the latest post-harvest research and cooperate on designing and applying innovative new post-harvest technologies.

The INPhO CD-ROM is available in English, French and Spanish, as is the Web site.

GTZ - Post-Harvest Homepage

6 October 2000

Rural Youth Survey

Youth organizations all over the world are playing an important role in encouraging young men and women to participate actively in the fight against hunger. Supporting their work is a high priority for FAO.

FAO is currently conducting a survey on the information and communication needs of youth organizations in developing countries. The five-page questionnaire, prepared by the Organization's Extension, Education and Communication Service, is intended to find out what type of information is most relevant to young men and women in rural communities and what are the most appropriate ways of getting that information to them. The results of this survey will help rural youth in developing countries get the information they need to make informed choices on how to build a better future for themselves, their families and their communities.

An electronic version of the questionnaire is available -- click here to download. It can be sent to You may also send it by fax (0339.06.57053152) or by mail addressed to William Seiders-Rural Youth Officer, SDRE, FAO, Viale delle Terme di Caracalla, 00100, Rome, Italy. The deadline for returning the survey is 20 October 2000.

Rural Youth Survey
FAO's Extension, Education and Communication Service


5 October 2000