WFP will use the funds to provide nutritional assistance to 4,200 refugee mothers and their children under two over the next four months. To be eligible for assistance, refugee mothers must get regular medical check-ups during pregnancy and after childbirth at WFP partner hospitals in the governorates of Cairo, Alexandria and Damietta.
WFP was forced in August 2020 to suspend the programme due to funding gaps.
WFP Representative and Country Director in Egypt Praveen Agrawal said, “Today we are glad to announce that our support to refugee mothers has resumed thanks to this generous contribution from the Government of Japan. This programme is vital for the most vulnerable mothers and their children as it is the only source of support for many of them and it gives them access to nutritious food they wouldn’t be able to afford otherwise.”
Refugee mothers will receive monthly top ups to their electronic cards that they will redeem for nutritious food items in the market. This support is critical during the ‘First 1,000 Days’ of a child’s life, from conception to two years of age, to prevent malnutrition and its irreversible effects such as chronic anaemia and stunting.
Mr. NOKE Masaki, Ambassador of Japan to Egypt said, “Save as many lives as possible, and leave no one’s health behind.’ This has been the conviction that Japan, as a country upholding ‘human security’ and ‘Universal Health Coverage’, has adhered to throughout this battle against the pandemic. We will continue to provide nutritional assistance for socially vulnerable people such as refugees, children and pregnant women with the international community. With this in mind, in order to improve nutrition for people around the world, Japan will host the Tokyo Nutrition for Growth Summit 2021 in December this year in cooperation with the international community, particularly WFP and other partners.”
WFP has been supporting refugees in Egypt since 2013, reaching today more than 120,000 refugees from different nationalities with food assistance.
The refugee assistance programme has transformed over the years to provide comprehensive integrated support alongside monthly assistance through cash-transfers via e-cards. This includes vocational training, resilience and capacity building activities to refugees and host community members offering them equal opportunities and better employability schemes.