KYIV – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) and its local partners have started distributing food assistance to 100,000 people in and around Kherson city in areas that had not been reached since March despite multiple attempts from WFP and other humanitarian agencies to secure access.
“As frontlines shift, we get access to more and more people in dire need of humanitarian assistance, in areas faced with massive damage to infrastructure, a lack of basic services and often no functioning markets and banks,” said WFP Country Director in Ukraine Matthew Hollingworth. “It is critical that we reach and support them as quickly as possible ahead of winter, and timely contributions from donors enable us to do that.”
A US$9.1 million contribution from the Howard G. Buffett Foundation, headed by the long-time supporter and former Goodwill Ambassador of WFP, Howard G. Buffett, will enable food assistance to be distributed to 100,000 people targeted by WFP for immediate support in the area. It adds to previous donations already received from the Foundation to support WFP’s humanitarian operations in Ukraine, including contributing to the first humanitarian shipments of Ukrainian wheat as part of the Black Sea Grain Initiative.
Last month WFP delivered food assistance for more than 200,000 people in newly accessible areas in Kharkiv, Donetsk, Kherson and Luhansk regions. Humanitarian agencies typically access these areas within a week, just after they are secured and demined.
WFP’s food assistance in Ukraine consists of 30-day food rations, typically including wheat flour or rice, pasta, canned meat or beans, and sunflower oil, or ready-to-eat rations and locally baked bread. 80% of this assistance is delivered in frontline or newly accessible areas that are directly affected by fighting. WFP has also distributed more than US$320 million in cash assistance to 2 million of the most vulnerable Ukrainians across the country, and supported the resumption of grain exports through Black Sea ports – directly benefiting Ukrainian farmers and the agricultural sector.
WFP’s food assistance in Ukraine is generously funded by USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance, Australia, Canada, the Czech Republic, Denmark, the European Union, France, Germany, Japan, Iceland, The Republic of Korea, Kuwait, the Federated States of Micronesia, Norway, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Timor Leste, as well as private donors such as the Howard G. Buffett Foundation.
The United Nations World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian organization, saving lives in emergencies and using food assistance to build a pathway to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change.