Resilience to food crises
The EU is the biggest development actor in food and nutrition security, providing substantial financial and political support. We help our partner countries strengthen the resilience of vulnerable households and communities to food crises, notably by investing in their agriculture-based livelihoods and economic opportunities, in disaster preparedness, and in systems that allow for timely assistance, such as social transfers. Enhancing our partner countries’ resilience to food crises helps them become independent from aid and therefore contributes to their sustainable development.
Our approach to increasing resilience to food crises relies on evidence, integrates humanitarian and development actions, as well as peace building in certain circumstances, and is based on coordination and partnership
Thanks to our systematic monitoring and rankings, which we combine with our long-term strategic programmes for food crises prevention and response, we are able to provide rapid aid to countries identified as the most vulnerable. Our analyses and monitoring also allow us to inform decision-making and advocacy in a timely manner.
Humanitarian and development actions
Building resilience to food crises requires a mix of humanitarian and development actions. We therefore support bridging the humanitarian-development-peace nexus to provide our partner countries with the best and most efficient aid to build their resilience to food crises and promote stronger and more sustainable food systems.
Coordination and partnership
Coordination and partnership at all levels - from global to local - is essential to build resilience to food crises around the world. We therefore participate in the sharing of up-to-date information to facilitate joint analyses of the root causes of food crises.
We also support specific initiatives that build regional capacities for adopting resilience strategies, such as the ‘Global alliance for resilience’ initiative (AGIR) and the ‘Supporting the Horn of Africa’s resilience’ initiative (SHARE).
Global Network against Food Crises
Together with the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Food Programme (WFP), the EU has launched the Global Network against Food Crises (GNFC) to promote better coordination of analyses and actions. The network publishes annual reports that provide an update and perspective analysis on food crises, country by country.
Between 2013 and 2018, our development work has helped 26 million food-insecure people build their resilience to food crises, through social transfers or livelihood support.
The EU Emergency Trust Fund for Africa addresses the root causes of migration in African countries to reinforce their stability. In addition to addressing migration and conflict root causes, the fund also aims to strengthen the resilience of vulnerable communities, by creating economic opportunities for the most vulnerable people. By 2019, the EU Emergency Trust Fund for Africa programmes had already provided 5.5 million people with basic social services and helped creating almost 170,000 jobs.
The ‘Resilience building and creation of economic opportunities’ programme (RESET II) in Ethiopia has allowed us to help over 1,800,000 people, half of whom are women. The programme offered nutrition-related services, support to new income-generating activities, and improved animal health support and livestock input for local farmers. The programme has had a profound impact on women empowerment, moving many women beneficiaries from a position of dependency to one of self-reliance. It also helped reduce youth emigration by stimulating local economic activity and improving service provision.
With our support, Niger significantly advanced its food and nutrition security and sustainable agriculture policies, resulting in better overall governance, improved service delivery, and increased food security. All these efforts allowed for a significant increase in the number of people considered as food secure, which went from 31% in 2013 to 58% in 2018.
Additionally, we have achieved encouraging results in terms of:
Agriculture-based livelihoods and improving economic opportunitiesIn Nigeria, our support helped increase agricultural productivity by 150%, with a growth in household income, asset accumulation, and improved livelihoods. In Colombia, we support 135,557 families with productive projects creating jobs and increasing incomes
Disaster preparednessIn Kenya, we support the national authority managing drought to mitigate the impacts of climate change and, more specifically, make sure droughts don’t result in crises. We also support Nepal’s efforts to mainstream agricultural resilience to enhance the resilience of farmers to climate change and other natural or man-made disasters.
Social transfersIn Yemen, 162,174 people benefitted from our financial support to enhance rural resilience. And, between 2008 and 2013, we provided 7.5 million vulnerable people in Ethiopia with cash or food, in return for their participation in public works.