WFP distributes 766 milling machines to 5,000 displaced families in Borno
The UN World Food Programme (WFP) and its partners have started the distribution of 766 milling machines to 5,000displaced families in Borno state to ease the problems of grain processing.
A statement by Kelechi Onyemaobi,National Communications Officer of WFP, on Wednesday in Abuja, said the milling machines were distributed to 12 communities in selected local government areas of Bama, Damboa, Dikwa, Gwoza, Jere, Mafa, Monguno and Konduga.
He said that the milling machines initiative was made possible by contributions to WFP’s food assistance activities in northeast for 2018 by Canada, European Commission (ECHO),Finland, Switzerland, the UK Department of International Development (DFID),the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and some private donors.
Onyemaobi said that the distribution was aimed at improving the beneficiaries’ quality of life and allow them to process grains such as sorghum and millet for others as well as for their own food needs.
“The families will also generate some income to maintain the milling machines, each of which comes with a toolbox.
“Distribution of the machines is focused on the most vulnerable groups in the state, especially women and girls that are mostly responsible for food preparation; they are also receiving training in the management of the machines,’’ he said.
Myrta Kaulard, WFP Country Director in Nigeria, noted that many families receiving food from WFP prefer to get milled sorghum or millet instead of the whole grains that took time to grind through traditional methods.
She stressed that some sold part of their food to access milling services in the camps or host communities, adding that the milling machines would now solve these problems for the families.
Kaulard said that WFP cooperating partners, such as Christian AID, Danish Refugees Council, CARE, International Medical Corps, INTERSOS, trained the recipients on record keeping, financial management and maintenance of machines.
The Country Director noted that from January to October, WFP provided food or cash assistance to an average of 1.1million people every month affected by the conflict in northeast Nigeria.
She, however, stressed that WFP required sustained funding to provide emergency food assistance, prevent malnutrition in young children and pregnant or breastfeeding women, support livelihoods and retain the flexibility to respond to further population displacement. (NAN)