What we aim to achieve

In recognition of the right to food*, and the increased vulnerability of households to food and nutrition insecurity, as a result of disasters and other hazards, achieving food and nutrition security and improving people`s livelihoods is key to the efforts of the IFRC to save lives, protect livelihoods and strengthen recovery from disasters and crises and enable healthy and safe living. Improving the availability, accessibility to and utilisation of food for all people at all times in a sustainable manner is therefore at the heart of the IFRC`s food and nutrition security programming to ensure that people meet their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life. The IFRC is committed to improve nutrition and mitigate the impacts of transient and chronic food insecurity to prevent and reduce risk, in a way that it builds the safety and resilience of affected communities in the longer term.

Under the umbrella of the community preparedness and risk reduction activities, the food and nutrition security and livelihoods programming thereby intend to support the three strategic aims of the Strategy 2020  that guides the IFRC with a greater focus of improving strategic aim 1 and 2*. As the Strategy 2020 inspires members and staff to do more, do better, and reach further, the IFRC is committed to support National Societies to scale up their food, nutrition and livelihood activities nation-wide to reduce hunger and malnutrition among the most vulnerable people at risk.

The IFRC involvement in food and nutrition security programming to address the global challenge of food and nutrition insecurity is guided by a number of declarations and strategies, namely the Ouagadougou Declaration (2000) and the Algiers Plan of Action  (2004), which was reaffirmed at the Johannesburg meeting in 2008 and the 8th Pan African Conference, held in Addis Ababa in 2012. The IFRC global “Food security and nutrition policy”defines the scope of the food security programming within National Societies.

Why is the Red Cross Red Crescent engaged in long-term food, nutrition and livelihoods programming?

The Red Cross Red Crescent has a number of comparative advantages to engage in food, nutrition and livelihoods security programming in order to reduce hunger and malnutrition. These include:

NATIONAL REACH: Local volunteer networks in all branches as well as experience and capacity at community level.

GLOBAL SCALE: Experience in rolling out community based approaches at global scale, e.g. food and nutrition security and livelihoods.

TECHNICAL CAPACITY: IFRC’s recognized expertise in emergency response and disaster risk reduction positions it to play a much-needed role in designing solutions that effectively promote integration between response, recovery, and reduction of chronic vulnerability. Furthermore, expertise with and linkages to community health and care provide avenues for improved integration of community based nutrition messaging as a complement to food and livelihood security activities.

POLICY/ADVOCACY CHANNELS:  A  special relationship along-side national governments, providing a unique avenue for policy influence, and a mandate to advocate locally and globally on behalf of the most food and nutrition insecure.

*The three strategic aims and actions which the Strategy 2020 defines are: 1. Save lives, protect livelihoods, and strengthen recovery from disasters and crises; 2. Enable healthy and safe living; 3. Promote social inclusion and a culture of non-violence and peace.