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An adapted response to the most vulnerable for achieving sustainable food and nutrition security in the Sahel belt

In Chad, successive crises are the main factor of chronic vulnerability of households. The increasing frequency and intensity of food and nutrition crises do not allow vulnerable populations to recover between two episodes and contribute to a progressive erosion of their means of production. The combination of climatic, sanitation, social and economic factors, such as the lack of infrastructures and basic services, explains the low resilience of populations and their vulnerability to even the slightest shock. In 2013, ACTED strived to pursue its response to address the multiple causes and consequences of crises affecting the most vulnerable.

Ensuring access to food for the most vulnerable

Successive climatic shocks, coupled with the economic vulnerability of households in the Sahel belt, regularly lead to poor harvests which endanger the most vulnerable populations. In particular the lean season (June to September) is characterized by the depletion of food stocks of poor households who also simultaneously face food price inflation in markets. In order to enable these households to meet their essential food needs and avoid a dangerous dilution of means of production, ACTED provided an integrated response consisting in food and cash provision to 26,326 persons in 2013.

Strengthening farmers production capacities

If an emergency response is needed to support populations who are vulnerable to acute food insecurity during the lean season, ACTED also focused its efforts towards strengthening farmers’ production capacities and diversifying households sources of income. It is indeed key to support the most vulnerable households so that they are able to improve their agriculture production and increase their income. Thus ACTED trained and supported market gardening groups, strengthened households livelihoods by distributing farming inputs and small ruminants, as well as by supporting the development of agricultural groups.

Ensuring a better access to WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) infrastructure

While only 10% of the population has access to drinking water and sanitation, this access is almost nonexistent in rural areas. In 2013, ACTED’s work aimed at improving access to water and promoting good hygiene and sanitation practices for 12,828 persons. To this end, ACTED implemented Community-Led Total Sanitation activities in Sila region, which enable populations to build their own latrines and reduce unhealthy conditions as well as related risks of diseases.

Strengthening populations’ resilience to nutrition and food crises as well as to climatic hazards

Following low harvests in 2013 affecting food security in 2014, ACTED will continue its emergency response (food assistance, malnutrition, cholera), while developing long term projects to fight the multisectoral root causes of this vulnerability. In 2014, ACTED will thus pursue its efforts to ensure food security in the Sahel belt, integrating a disaster risk management and adaptation to climatic hazards aspect. These interventions will contribute to strengthening our work in the sectors of community development and local governance.

Partners in 2013:

Ambassade de France, Direction Générale de l'Aide Humanitaire et de la Protection Civile (ECHO), EuropeAid, Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA), Organisation des Nations unies pour l'alimentation et l'agriculture (FAO), Programme Alimentaire Mondial (PAM).

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