BAGHDAD – The United Nations World Food Program (WFP) and the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) together supported 104,500 people from vulnerable communities in Iraq to rebuild their post-conflict livelihoods and adapt to climate change, while promoting the digitalisation of the public sector distribution system for food rations (PDS).
“The idea that people in Iraq in these times are still suffering from food insecurity is unbearable for me,” said German Ambassador to the Republic of Iraq Martin Jäger. “Germany is committed to helping the Iraqi people build economic resilience, as this is the foundation of growth and stability. We are promoting several multilateral and bilateral programs such as the WFP’s country strategic plan to promote food security and will continue to do so. Germany has an interest in seeing the most vulnerable supported, a functioning social security structure as well as a prosperous and stable Iraq. “
Germany is a longtime partner of WFP in Iraq and contributed EUR 17.25 million in 2021, including to rural and urban programs, which also indirectly supported 288,100 people in local communities. Germany is a key donor to the EMPACT (Empowerment in Action) initiative, WFP’s award-winning digital skills, English and entrepreneurship education for young people. In addition, the digitization of the PDS, Iraq’s paper-based food rationing map and largest social protection program, continues to help the government help the right people with the right food at the right time across 18 governors.
“Germany is a very important partner for WFP, and their multi-year flexible support has helped the most vulnerable Iraqis re-establish their livelihoods in areas of return and enabled us to work with the Iraqi government and partners to introduce smart innovations. solutions to help smallholder farmers adapt to and mitigate the effects of climate change in Iraq, “said WFP’s Iraqi ally Raza Qureshi. In parallel, Germany’s urban assistance and EMPACT training helped young people and women with professional skills and grants for small businesses, while funding for the digitization of PDS improves the government’s social protection for its citizens. It is a holistic approach and we thank the people and the government of Germany for their generous contribution. “
With support from Germany, WFP’s rural development activities helped vulnerable communities with access to water, minimizing water consumption, managing salt content and training, and tools to plant and grow food and sell profits. It is significant support for confronting climate change, and in conflict-affected areas, it also contributes to the UN ‘sustainable solutions’ approach to helping families returning from displacement. Digitized PDS systems mean that families can more easily update their data to receive public assistance at their location.
Based on German support from 2021, climate adaptation in 2022 is another focus alongside projects on urban life in southern Iraq and Ninewa, which continue with education that prioritizes young people and women, including online marketing, so they can reach their customers. The approach, as in the EMPACT program, promotes entrepreneurship. As we approach COP27 in Egypt in 2022, Germany and the WFP continue to support families in confronting climate change. Germany’s partnership with WFP helps the most vulnerable families regain sustainable livelihoods.