• Wednesday, Apr 21, 2021
  • Last Update : 12:48 am

WFP livelihoods program supports record number of women in Cox’s Bazar

  • Published at 06:02 pm March 8th, 2021
Women shak vegetable green crop land agriculture farmer
Photo: Mahmud Hossain Opu/Dhaka Tribune

Fifteen thousand additional women have been enrolled in the program this month

The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) is reaching more women today than any other time in the history of its livelihoods-based program in Cox’s Bazar district.

Since 2012, the WFP’s Enhancing Food Security and Nutrition (EFSN) livelihoods program has supported women throughou Cox’s Bazar with entrepreneurial training and financial literacy to help them achieve long-term and sustainable food security. 

This month, 15,000 additional women have been enrolled in the program as the agency expands into the district’s most disaster-prone areas of Moheshkhali, Pekua and Kutubdia for the first time, reads a press release. 

WFP already supports 30,000 women through the program in Ukhiya and Teknaf sub-districts.

“While the coronavirus pandemic pushed many vulnerable families to the edge of hunger last year, women were put in particularly precarious positions as they tried to balance keeping food on the table while carrying out increased responsibilities at home,” said Sheila Grudem, WFP senior emergency coordinator in Cox’s Bazar.

“WFP has extended and scaled up its livelihoods activities so that women most at risk have an added safetynet during this difficult period and can gain the knowledge and financial security they need to get them through future ones.”

Also read: PM Hasina urges women to be more qualified for attaining their rights

Data from WFP indicates that women-headed households in Cox’s Bazar district continued to be at risk of increased vulnerability last year and, on average, earned nearly 30% less than male-headed households. 

Globally, women are more likely than men to go hungry, as highlighted on Monday by WFP on International Women’s Day. Yet women reinvest 90% of their resources back into their families and communities, making them powerful contributors to ending hunger. 

In response to the pandemic, WFP has effectively doubled the number of women enrolled in the two-year program. Upon completion of training and the submission of a business plan, program participants receive a substantive start-up grant to invest in their new businesses. More than 816 group businesses were started in 2020 through the program and nearly Tk80,000,000 was raised and saved in collective bank accounts held by participants’ Self-Help Groups. 

“Putting women at the centre of earning opportunities doesn’t just ensure Zero Hunger futures for them but benefits whole families and communities,” Grudem added. 

The program has also been extended to help women with agricultural-based businesses better access markets to sell their produce and livestock, including in the Rohingya refugee camps where WFP provides food assistance to over 850,000 refugees. 

So far, WFP has connected 18,849 women to food markets inside the camps, including WFP’s Fresh Food Corners where refugees can access fresh fruits and vegetables. Additionally, the program’s monthly cash allowances have started being distributed through bKash, the national mobile financial service, further strengthening participants’ financial inclusion in the country.

Facebook 57
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail