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Plan of the World Food Programme

World Food Programme – Blog Post

Rebecca Graffy, Vanessa Joch, Lucy Perkins, Eric Siegel

Program Development: Process and Challenges
-The WFP does not have an office in Morocco, so an immediate challenge was determining how to collect information and form a presence on the ground where we previously had none. Furthermore, the WFP has had tense relations with the Moroccan government as of late and so we were initially unsure as to how receptive the government would be towards our efforts.
-Our program depends upon being able to survey the affected populations swiftly and accurately, a challenge given that the population is likely to be scattered, anxious, and not trusting of foreign staff. We do not know to what extent we can expect our surveys to accurately reflect the situation.
-One of our main concerns was how to ensure that vulnerable groups (children, for example) could be targeted and given immediate and steady access to supplies without becoming more vulnerable to aggression or theft.
-A major hurdle in planning and implementing a response program was the presence of damaged infrastructure in Rabat and Sale and throughout the country. Planning the entry of staff and supplies and the subsequent plan of action was very difficult without knowing the exact state of things on the ground and the feasibility of carrying out operations.
-We struggled a bit with balancing short-term and long-term interests and deciding which needs to address first. Additionally, determining a system of fair distribution with checks on the fishermen and other volunteers, was a high concern, as was determining who qualified as being an at risk population and to what degree should our efforts be focused on them.
-We felt more confident in our plan after communicating with the Red Crescent and gaining their approval for our food rations for volunteers program. We recognize that further communication with the other organizations would have improved our plan, reduced redundancy among the groups, and helped increase the amount of information available to us.

Program Summary

Goal: Food security for all

  • Objective: Short term relief
    • MRC food-for-work
    • Fishermen distribution program
  • Objective: Long-term stability
    • Voucher/Cash system
    • School distribution

The ultimate goal of the World Food Program is to assure food security in Rabat and the surrounding area. The nature of this objective is twofold: relief in the short term, and working towards the promotion of long term stability. Two specific programs have been designed to provide short term relief. These programs will be followed by two long term efforts to assure continuing stability in the region

Short Term:

The WFP has designed its program for immediate relief aid following an assessment of the needs of Rabat, of the resources — both material and humanitarian — in the region, and of the political and administrative capability of the WFP within Morocco. This two-pronged program will focus first on supporting the volunteers and relief effort of humanitarian organizations more established in Rabat — predominantly the Moroccan Red Crescent Society – by offering food rations to volunteers in exchange for service in recovery efforts. The second prong will take advantage of the WFP’s considerable resources and of its role as a leader of humanitarian organizations.

The WFP will spearhead a program for supplying and distributing relief aid amongst the populations of IDPs migrating to the banks of the Bou Regreg River. This population’s need for food has been identified as critical, and access to them is limited because of the damage to many of the inroads to the city, including the port of Rabat. To circumvent these obstacles and supply the population with food and water the WFP, with the support of Red Crescent volunteers, will enlist the assistance of the many local fishermen and requisition local vessels. Using these resources provisions shipped to the mouth of the Bou Regreg will be ferried to IDP camps. We are aware of the risk of conflict and corruption surrounding the process of distribution and are planning to implement a verification and award system.

Long Term:

In order to promote local food markets, WFP will provide families with food vouchers that can be redeemed with local vendors for food. This will cut down on our transportation costs and will help stimulate the economy and secure food production more naturally. Food vouchers can be distributed in paper form and redeemed by the vendors through the WFP temp. office on the ground. They can also be distributed and redeemed electronically. This method enables victims of the earthquake to purchase the resources that they need the most and also provides us with a method to track what goods the victims of the quake want/need. The WFP has previously used voucher systems following disasters in Pakistan and the Philippines.

To encourage the population to return to normal life and to promote children’s education, the WFP will provide a free lunch program at elementary and primary schools. This incentive will keep students in school longer and is also intended to help to improve the low literacy rate (52%). Furthermore, similar programs have proven successful in encouraging young girls to attend school. In 2008, the net enrollment of girls and boys in WFP-assisted schools was 76% and 78% respectively. The attendance rate in WFP-assisted schools was 93% for both genders. In addition to a school lunch program, the schools can provide a good distribution point for food rations and food vouchers (see below) to ensure that the at-risk population is targeted and whole families are benefiting from our aid.

Timeline:

Survey collection in 4 days, potentially with periodic check ins every week.

Short term: Immediate implementation, yet we recognize that food will not become scarce until a few days after the earthquake, giving us time for the assessment and shipment of supplies.

Long term: The WFP does not intend to establish a permanent office in Morocco. We intend to remain in the country until enough reconstruction has been completed enough to allow employment to return to close to pre-earthquake levels, or until the government asks us to desist operations.

We will need temporary office space as well as WFP supplies and vehicles, and will need to know more about the MRC’s plans and how the Moroccan government feels about our intervention.

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