Food Security

UBALE: United in Building and Advancing Life Expectations – PARTICIPATORY GENDER ANALYSIS FINAL REPORT

United in Building and Advancing Life Expectations (UBALE), is a five-year (2015-2019) Food for Peace program funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and implemented by a consortium led by Catholic Relief Services (CRS) in partnership with the Cooperative for Assistance and Relief Everywhere (CARE), Save the Children, and the Catholic Development Commission in Malawi (CADECOM). The program aims to reduce chronic malnutrition and food insecurity and build resilience among vulnerable populations in three districts in Malawi, Blantyre Rural, Chikwawa and Nsanje.

This report describes the process and findings specific to the UBALE program. Read More...


This report provides the results of the final evaluation of the Emergency Food Security Program (EFSP) implemented in twelve districts within the four regions of Sool, Sanaag, Galgaduud and Mudug that was conducted during July and August 2019.

Over and above the program performance parameters, the beneficiaries overwhelmingly indicated that the program had had significant positive impacts. The program was considered timely as it was delivered when beneficiaries were getting into months of food insecurity. When asked whether the cash transfer had improved their livelihoods, 93% of the household survey respondents reported that their livelihoods had improved, mainly in terms of improved purchasing power (93%), ease of meeting their basic needs (78%), better social status (22%), better and more recognition (17%), taking children to school (14%), access to healthcare (9%) and in other (non-described) areas (7%). In the household survey, 94% of the respondents received three cycles of the correct amount, whilst 5% who were targeted under the Rapid Response Fund (RRF) received two cycles enabling households to purchase their preferred foods, at least 25Kg of rice, 25Kg of sugar, 25kg wheat flour, 3kg of cooking oil, 10kg of pasta and some vegetables.

The program had a positive impact on the 52,299 households enrolled. The programme resulted in a reduction of distress coping strategies, with an average rCSI of 12.8 reducing from 20.4 at the program baseline. This supports the effectiveness of the program in enabling the beneficiaries to reduce the number of negative coping strategies that they were previously employing in order to meet basic household needs. In addition, as planned, all the households used the cash transfer to meet their basic needs, with 97% of them using the cash transfer to purchase food for the household, indicating that the cash intervention has directly contributed to the enhancement of the household food security during the drought. Trend analysis shows that throughout the program there was a downward trend of the rCSI scores, while there was an increase of household dietary diversity index to 20.4 compared to the baseline of 12.8. Similarly, an analysis of household hunger shows that in general the beneficiaries were experiencing little to no hunger, with only 13% experiencing moderate hunger and 86% of households experiencing little to no hunger. This again indicates that the programme has achieved positive outcomes.

While the evidence suggests that the program generated a number of positive impacts, across many domains, demonstrating effective and efficient implementation, and that the beneficiaries used the cash as per the original objectives of the program, households continue to faces challenges in their capacity to fully recover from the impacts of conflict and drought. Increasing the scale of interventions and developing additional holistic livelihood strategies for the target areas, creating linkages with market-based interventions and improvement in access to water, education and healthcare, experimenting with graduation models combined with local savings (VSLAs) were among some of the areas identified for improving future programming. A more detailed description of these recommendations is provided towards the tail end of the report. Read More...

Somalia Resilience Program Third Party Monitoring: Midline Assessment

The Somalia Resilience Program (SomReP) is a consortium of seven international non-governmental organisations (INGOs). The aim of the consortium is to enhance the resilience of vulnerable households and communities in Southern Somalia against cyclical shocks and stressors. The program’s activities focus on securing livelihoods and increasing adaptive capacities of communities and households in Somalia.

Overall, positive developments from the baseline was noted for most of the indicators analyzed in this report. Most of these positive developments could be attributed to different programme interventions. The attribution was tested through statistical correlation analysis and by synthesizing programme documents and the data collected at various stages throughout the project. The food security status of the respondents had improved, both in terms of food consumption and coping strategies. For example, the proportion of the respondents categorized as having an acceptable level of the Food Consumption Score (FCS) had increased from 48.5% in the baseline to 80.4% in the midline. The income of the respondents had also improved with both a significantly higher average income as well as more diversified income being reported. Those respondents that were part of a savings scheme as well as those that had received cash distributions through Cash for Work (CfW) or Unconditional Cash Transfers (UCT) reported higher FCS than those who had not. Respondents that had received cash distributions were also positively associated with higher incomes. As such, it is recommended that both VSLA and cash programming interventions should be sustained and if possible scaled-up. It is worth noting that livelihoods were still largely climate sensitive, with day labour in agriculture being the most common and important livelihood strategy, especially for male respondents. This implies that most people are still highly vulnerable to climatic shocks, such as drought. Read More...

Somalia Resilience Program Third Party Monitoring: Baseline Study

The Somalia Resilience Program (SomReP) is a consortium of seven Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO), the activities of which aim to enhance the resilience of vulnerable households and communities in Southern Somalia against cyclical shocks and stressors. This report serves as the baseline for the Third Party Monitoring (TPM) of SomReP in two districts in South and Central Somalia: Afgooye and Baidoa. The TPM study is undertaken by Forcier Consulting on behalf of SomReP, with the aim to rigorously monitor the progress and outcomes of the program.

The data indicates that resilience differed among livelihood groups (agro-pastoralist, pastoralists, and peri-urban), between women and men, and across seasons. This means that program approaches should take these differences into account when targeting groups for various interventions. For instance, people in peri-urban areas tended to have less diverse diets, while pastoralists tend to engage in more severe and frequent coping strategies. Out of the different livelihood types, pastoralists were also the most likely to report no access to risk transfer or sharing. Further, women tended to have less diverse incomes than men and incomes tend to be lowest in the dry season of Jilaal, the season in which most agriculture-related work was replaced with unskilled work. These findings indicate that women should be more frequently targeted for income diversity interventions, and pastoralists should be targeted with interventions that aim to increase social safety nets, such as risk sharing.

Capacities to deal with stressors in both the short and long-term were low across the targeted areas. Natural resource management (NRM) was poor in both districts and in and across communities. Sustainable access to natural resources is an important factor in ensuring long-term resilience and should therefore receive more attention across the communities. Response capacities were also absent across the communities. Only 9.7 of all respondents said their community had a community-based early warning system in place. Further, only 5.7% of the respondents said community initiatives existed that aimed to access support from sub-national and national institutions and authorities to respond to and cope with the recurrent shocks and stressors. Hence, moving forward, the program should ensure a focus of combined approaches to achieve improvements in system-wide resilience. Read More...

Inter-agency Response to Tropical Cyclone Gita Tonga

In response to the damage and the immediate needs of the affected population, taking in to account the expertise of the agencies, MORDI Trust Tonga (MORDI), Live & Learn Environmental Education (LLEE) and CARE Australia (CARE) formed a partnership to deliver humanitarian assistance on the islands of Tongatapu and ‘Eua.

The response program included assistance provided in the areas of shelter, WASH, food security and livelihoods, with an underlying focus on gender and social inclusion. Donor funding for the response program through CARE Australia included DFAT funding through the Australian Humanitarian Partnership, ECHO and the START Network. Additional grants directly to MORDI from Oxfam and Rotary/MFAT also formed part of the overall response program.
This report will aim to test the effectiveness and efficiency of the overall response program. Read More...

Tropical Cyclone Gita Response Program Evaluation

Tropical Cyclone (TC) Gita, a Category 4 cyclone, struck Tonga in February 2018. CARE, Live and Learn, and MORDI (‘the partnership’) responded to the immediate needs of communities on Tongatapu and ‘Eua islands, delivering emergency shelter and hygiene kits. In the recovery phase the partnership supported communities with shelter, repairs to water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) infrastructure, and food security and livelihood recovery efforts, including a specific project focused on the recovery priorities of seven women’s groups on ‘Eua island.

CARE commissioned this evaluation to assess the assistance provided through the response and recovery program in the first six months (February – August 2018). The evaluation focused on four main areas of enquiry: the partnership, the response, gender and inclusion, and localisation.

This report documents the findings from the evaluation and provides forward-looking recommendations for the partnership and for preparedness and future emergency response in Tonga. Read More...

Addressing Food Crisis in Yemen

In 2017, in response to the one of the world's worst manmade crises, a consortium of CARE and Action Contra La Faim (ACF) implemented a EU-Funded Multi-Purpose Cash program in Abyan and Amran governorates with a mean aim of enhancing food security (FS) as well as supporting livelihood activities, savings groups and the resilience of communities with the rehabilitation of critical community-identified shared assets. The program design was aligned to the Humanitarian Development Nexus framework, which focuses on a shift from supplying humanitarian assistance to those who need it, to reducing the demand for humanitarian assistance by addressing the root causes.

This report presents the evaluation findings from the project during over its full implementation period (October 2017- February 2019) in the targeted areas. It uses the DAC Evaluation Criteria: Relevance, Efficiency, Effectiveness, Impact and Sustainability. It also provides insight on the internal and external factors influencing the achievement (or non-achievement) of the project objectives. The analysis should inform decisions about replicating interventions, draw conclusions about the effectiveness of the implementation strategies, highlight lessons learned and lead to recommendations to inform future programming and policymaking. Read More...

5 Game Changing Initiatives for Transformative Agricultural Extension

The USAID Agricultural Extension Support Activity (AESA) project is a key part of Bangladesh-centered Feed the Future (FtF) initiative addresses this challenge. Implemented by the Dhaka Ahsania Mission (DAM) with technical partners CARE Bangladesh and mPower Social Enterprises Ltd., the goal of the project which started at late 2012 is to strengthen the existing extension system in southwest and central Bangladesh to sustainably improve food security and nutrition for smallholder farmers. This translates to the enhancement of access to and utilization of agricultural extension services by smallholder farmers – both women and men. Key interventions under this project works to build capacities and creating support to a demand-driven extension system, synergized by the use of ICT. Geographically distributed in the central and southwest Bangladesh, the project operates in 12 districts, covering 26 upazilas, under Jessore, Khulna and Barisal regions as primary intervention areas.

This report identifies 5 game changing initiatives for transformative agricultural extension. Read More...

Gender Equity and Women’s Empowerment: The Journey So far; The Experience of the ENSURE Program

The ENSURE Food Security Program is a USAID-funded, five-year intervention designed to profoundly and sustainably impact 215,000 vulnerable and food- insecure Zimbabweans in Manicaland and Masvingo Provinces. The program is a shared commitment by four partners and one service provider—World Vision, CARE, SNV, SAFIRE and ICRISAT—who work together to mainstream gender equity and natural resource management in the three key areas of maternal and child nutrition and health, agricultural production and marketing, and community resilience.

The success of ENSURE can be portrayed through the accounts of thousands of women and men whose lives have been changed through its various programme interventions. Tangible gender transformative changes can be noticed on several dimensions: joint household decision making; reduced violence against women; increased women’s leadership in community leadership; men assisting women with household chores and childcare; women’s ownership of high value productive assets; and increased access and control over income.

ROM Review: Initiative REVANCHE: Résilience et Adaptation aux Variabilités Climatiques, pour une Sécurité Alimentaire et Nutritionnelle Durable au Tchad, Régions de Wadi Fira, Guera et Ouadaï.

PERTINENCE. La mise en oeuvre de l’action REVANCHE a confirmé la pertinence de la stratégie PRO-ACT Résilience qui a été à l’origine de sa conception et du choix du mode d’exécution du projet permettant la sortie de l’urgence et l’ancrage d’un développement durable au sein des communautés cible. Les réponses proposées sont appropriées pour satisfaire les besoins des bénéficiaires et soutiennent la Plan nationale de renforcement de la résilience des populations tchadiennes. La pertinence est maintenue tout au long de l’exécution car le projet répond aux besoins des plus vulnérables par des actions à effets immédiats par du cash qui permet l’accès
à l’alimentation et aux soins de santé.

EFFICIENCE. La mise en oeuvre s’est révélée efficiente et propice à une bonne progression vers la réalisation des résultats recherchés. Le projet a connu un retard dans son démarrage mais dont les causes relèvent, pour la plupart d’entre elles, de facteurs externes au projet lui-même.

EFFICACITÉ. Le projet a été efficace à livrer la majeure partie des produits planifiés, notamment ceux consistant en travaux et réalisations d’ouvrages physiques et en appuis méthodologiques et logistiques aux parties étatiques et ONG partenaires.

DURABILITÉ. La problématique de la durabilité se pose encore en termes de capacité des communautés à s’approprier les apports du projet. Quatre ONG nationales ont pris part à l’exécution du projet REVANCHE et ont bénéficié d’un paquet de formations et du coaching progressif de CARE et OXFAM. Mais les organisations communautaires de base (organisations paysannes, groupements féminins, artisans réparateurs de pompes, groupe pour le système d’alerte précoce, GIE d’ouvriers maçons, …) qui constituent le socle de la stratégie de durabilité de l’action sont encore à un stade embryonnaire et requièrent des appuis et une mise en réseau entre eux et avec les services publiques Read More...

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