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WFP and FAO stand together in the fight for a zero hunger world

Investing in food security and rural development to change the future of migration

Women signing in support of food production self-sufficiency and zero hunger during FAO and WFP's World Food Day celebration in Sudan.

17 October 2017, Khartoum - The UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Food Programme (WFP) yesterday joined Sudan’s Ministry of Agriculture and Forests in celebrating World Food Day, reaffirming their commitment to investing in food security and rural development.

This year’s theme for World Food Day was Change the Future of Migration: Invest in food security and rural development’. As global hunger rises for the first time in over a decade, affecting 815 million people or 11 per cent of the global population.  Hunger, conflict and migration are all inter-linked.  Over the longer term, food insecurity has an inter-generational ‘half-life’, stunting the development of future generations and sowing the seeds for future displacement and conflict.

“In 2015, for example, over 244 million people migrated across international borders. The scale of internal migration is even higher, with the latest estimates numbering 763 million internal migrants,” said FAO Representative in Sudan, Babagana Ahmadu.

“Comparatively speaking, today Sudan is more peaceful than it has been in the past 15 years and it’s our responsibility to help people survive and thrive,” said WFP Sudan Representative, Matthew Hollingworth.

FAO and WFP work in Sudan

To fight hunger effectively, FAO and WFP, together with their partners recognize and address both the symptoms of hunger, and build solutions that target the challenges of hunger at its core. Interventions that address root causes of hunger can and must be implemented at scale.

In Sudan, FAO is engaged in resilience-building activities, promoting a broad policy and programme approach that requires the collaboration and support of partners across diverse sectors, including agriculture, education, health and social protection, to implement inter-agency initiatives to address food insecurity in a holistic way and to incorporate nutrition-sensitive frameworks. In Sudan, FAO also works on supporting and re-establishing agricultural, forestry and fishing livelihoods as well as addressing issues such as access to land and other natural resources are critical components of durable solutions to achieve food security.

“In Sudan, FAO is committed to people-centered approaches that build resilient livelihoods and enable self-sufficiency,” Ahmadu added.

WFP prides itself on being an organization which has the agility to move from emergency response to longer-term solutions. WFP Sudan has a portfolio of interventions ranging from school meals that help retain young girls in school to innovative projects that aim to improve nutrition behaviour in Sudan. WFP is contributing to food assistance, preventive and curative nutrition interventions, and safe access to fuel and energy to attain Zero Hunger. Under its new Country Strategic Plan, WFP will focus on nutrition-sensitive programming in schools and will strengthen the capacities of national institutions and the Scaling-Up Nutrition network.  WFP will also offer asset-creation activities through productive safety-nets to help food-insecure households reduce risk and adapt to climate change, as well as provide livelihood support to farmers.

“Only by taking the longer view, by thinking big, can we in time provide greater autonomy and dignity to the people we serve,” said Hollingworth.

Migration in Sudan

In Sudan, conflict has led to the internal displacement of thousands of people in addition to the arrival of more than 440,000 refugees from war-torn South Sudan.

Food insecurity stunts the growth of Sudan’s future. Sudan’s recovery or continued instability will depend on the recovery of food systems and improved nutrition. 

“With sustainable food systems, Sudan could become the food security hub for the region, and return to its former glory as the bread basket for East Africa,” said Hollingworth.

“We believe that migration should be a choice, not a necessity, and FAO is working with partners and communities around the world and in Sudan to give people back that choice,” said Ahmadu. “Any plan to tackle the challenges associated with migration must consider its agricultural and rural dimensions.”

World Food Day

World Food Day is an occasion for the humanitarian and development community to self-reflect on its work in Sudan and together design a way forward to better align its programming and approaches to meet the changing dynamics across the country. This can only be done by everyone working together - government, donors, non-governmental organisations and the United Nations family collaborating to design the best way forward.

FAO and WFP, together with the entire United Nations, now have a new series of target in the form of the Sustainable Development Goals. The role of the Sudan Country Team is to support the country’s government in meeting its national priorities and ensuring that it works for all its people – in particular, around the core issues of continued humanitarian assistance, sustainable development, and peacebuilding, while addressing the root causes of hunger and malnutrition.

FAO celebrates Word Food Day each year on 16 October to commemorate the founding of the organization in 1945. Events are organized in over 150 countries across the world, making it one of the most celebrated days of the UN calendar. These events promote worldwide awareness and action for those who suffer from hunger and for the need to ensure food security and nutritious diets for all.


FAO leads international efforts to defeat hunger.  FAO assists developing countries and countries in transition to modernize and improve agriculture, forestry and fisheries practices and ensure good nutrition for all. FAO focuses special attention on developing rural areas, home to 70 percent of the world's poor and hungry people. Follow FAO on Twitter: @FAOinNENA_EN @FAOinNENA

WFP is the world's largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide, delivering food assistance in emergencies and working with communities to improve nutrition and build resilience. Each year, WFP assists some 80 million people in around 80 countries. Follow WFP on Twitter: @wfp_media 


For more information please contact:

WFP Sudan Head of Communications, Bianka Zyra: bianka.zyra@wfp.org, +249 912 505 210

FAO Sudan Deputy Representatives, Veronica Quattro:  Veronica.Quattrola@fao.org , +249 1 83 77 9367


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