UNFPA provides support to pregnant women and nursing mothers affected by drought

Pregnant women and nursing mothers who live in regions extremely affected by the drought will receive food packages provided by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) as part of the UN project “Relief and Technical Assistance Response to the Drought in Moldova”. The food packages with a total cost of $ 70,000 have been handed over on Thursday, October 18, to the Ministry of Health. Food packages containing sunflower oil, rice, sugar, flour, maize, dry yeast and beans, will be distributed to pregnant women and nursing mothers (with 6-month old children) through reproductive health centres from the 19 districts most affected by this summer’s drought. The Ministry of Health with UNFPA’s support has developed an integrated plan for transparent distribution of these food packages to the vulnerable groups of people. The food is packaged in 4,700 boxes for individual distribution. Kaarina Immonen, UN Resident Coordinator in Moldova, highlighted during the meeting that UNFPA’s donation makes part of the UN project to respond to the request for assistance made by the Prime Minister of Moldova to the United Nations Secretary General to alleviate the consequences of the drought which hit the country earlier this year. Until now, 20,500 farm households affected by drought have benefited from packages consisting of seeds, fertilisers and fuel provided by the United Nations through the respective project. In the next months, an additional 15,000 socially vulnerable households will receive livestock fodder. Also vulnerable groups of population will be provided with free meals and allowances as well as fortified cereals to avoid iron deficiency. In order to reduce the negative impact of droughts in the future, the UN Agencies will develop an Agricultural Development Strategy. The project will be carried out during six months and has a total available budget of nearly $6 million. The financial support is provided by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), the Austrian Development Agency (ADA), the European Commission through its Humanitarian Office (ECHO), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA). The project is managed by the United Nations Development Programme in partnership with the Food and Agriculture Organisation, the UN Population Fund, the United Nations Children Fund, other UN agencies and the Government of the Republic of Moldova as well as non-governmental organisations and local public authorities which are implementing partners of the project. More information about the UN response to the drought is available at http://www.un.md/drought.

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