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Resilience in Protracted Crises

Protracted crises exist in over 20 countries, potentially affecting half a billion people. In these situations, undernourishment is severe, long-standing and almost three times more frequent than in other developing contexts..

Strengthening resilience for improved food security and nutrition.

Protracted crises are characterized by a complex combination of recurring causes, including conflicts, natural hazards, economic shocks, socio-political crisis, fragile governance and critically weak institutional capacity. Risks of food supply disruption, pandemics and natural resources depletion are exacerbated.

FAO provides policy guidance, builds partnerships, and supports programmes to strengthen livelihoods and food systems and reduce communities’ exposure to crises. In October 2015, the Committee on World Food Security endorsed the Framework for Action for Food Security and Nutrition in Protracted Crises (CFS-FFA) outlining principles guiding the development, implementation and monitoring of policies. FAO has supported the CFS-FFA drafting and negotiation processes, and is now operationalizing the Framework.

Key policy messages

·        The CFS-FFA is the first global agreement on coordinated action to improve food security and nutrition in protracted crises. This voluntary Framework is intended to guide the development, implementation and monitoring of coherent policies and programmes by governments and other stakeholders.

·        Policies in protracted crises must tackle the immediate crisis’ impact, but also prepare for the future through linkages between humanitarian relief and longer-term development. They must also address the underlying causes of recurring acute hunger and disasters, and, in so doing, increase communities’, households’, food systems’ and ecosystems’ resilience.

·        Policies must better reflect the importance of the agriculture and rural economy in protracted crises. While agriculture accounts for a third of national income in countries in protracted crisis, the sector receives only
4 percent of humanitarian aid and 3 percent of development aid, and most of the time less than 10% of national budgets.

·        Collective and coherent action by humanitarian, development and other partners is necessary to strengthen resilience to crises. This is a key focus of the 2016 World Humanitarian Summit and is vital to achieve the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals.

·        FAO works with the European Union, the Rome-based Agencies (WFP and IFAD), among numerous other partners, on a wide variety of preventive and proactive initiatives in protracted crisis situations.  The CFS-FFA provides an overarching Framework for this collaboration and action.

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