Food Security

What FAO is doing to help

Raise awareness among the public and political leaders, and build a consensus for action

FAO is working to raise awareness among policy makers, programme planners and development specialists, and secure commitments to systematically incorporate:

• HIV/AIDS considerations and objectives into existing food security policies and programmes; and

• nutrition and food security considerations and objectives into HIV/AIDS policies and programmes.

To this end, FAO has also produced a range of materials, including the recent guide, "Incorporating HIV/AIDS considerations into food security and livelihood projects", and a half-hour television documentary about the impact of HIV/AIDS on food security in southern Africa. The film, "Sowing Seeds of Hunger," is available in English, French and Spanish and encouraged to be broadcast locally and used as an advocacy tool in workshops and awareness-raising campaigns.

Ensure nutritional care for people living with HIV/AIDS

FAO has embarked upon a range of programmes to enhance people's access to adequate, nutritious diets, including home and community gardening projects, food assistance, nutrition education and communication, and local training.

FAO and the World Health Organization (WHO) have also produced "Living Well with HIV/AIDS: A manual on nutritional care and support for people living with HIV/AIDS", which is available in English, French, Spanish and Italian.

Protect and support food security and livelihoods among vulnerable households

Two FAO nutrition and household food security projects in Mozambique and Zambia are using a mix of interventions, such as food aid, labour- and time-saving technologies, and microfinance, to help support food production and diversification among HIV/AIDS-affected households.

Strengthen community-based initiatives to better care for AIDS-affected household

FAO field projects are playing a key role in strengthening the organizational capacity of community care systems, and promoting their establishment in places where they do not exist. Given the high turnover of community volunteers, locally adapted training programmes are also being established.

The Mansa Orphanage in Zambia is one such project where FAO staff are working to help the orphanage produce and acquire food for AIDS-affected orphans, and providing nutritional care and support.

Provide education, life skills and vocational training to orphans and other vulnerable children.

FAO has recently teamed with UNICEF to begin projects in Malawi and Lesotho that will aim to encourage more orphans and other vulnerable children to attend school and receive a basic education. While school feeding and other incentive programmes can help achieve this goal, the projects will also support children's needs for life skills and vocational training, particular as it relates to food, nutrition and agriculture.

© FAO 2010