KAMPALA — The Food Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) have received a USD 4.7 million contribution from the Kingdom of Norway for a three-year joint programme that will help build climate resilience, improve food security and nutrition in Teso, Northeastern Uganda.
The project “Building Climate-Resilience for Food and Nutrition Security of Small Holder Farming Households in Teso Sub-Region in Uganda” will be implemented in Kaberamaido and Katakwi districts, reaching out to 8 000 people, with priority given to women-headed households.
Like the neigbouring Karamoja sub-region, Teso suffers cyclic shocks that have worsened over the years. Chronic droughts and floods have stood in the way of people producing enough nutritious food to meet their needs. The February 2022 Integrated Food Security Phase Classification Analysis (IPC) indicates that close to one million people are facing high levels of food insecurity. Food and nutrition insecurity are compounded by climate extremes and land degradation in the region, increasing the population’s vulnerability to multiple shocks.
“Teso is a highly vulnerable area and, without quick interventions that will make a long-term difference in peoples’ lives, the people will continue to suffer high levels of food security and malnutrition. We know that in FAO and WFP, we have partners who are experienced and committed to ensuring that no region is left behind when it comes to reaching zero hunger by 2030,” The Norwegian Ambassador to Uganda, Elin Ostebo Johansen, said at a ceremony where Norway signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the UN agencies.
“The Teso sub-region is among the most critically vulnerable to climate change and it is anticipated that the frequency of heavy rainfall will increase, escalating the risk of floods and landslides”, said Antonio Querido, FAO Representative in Uganda. “In addition, the agricultural production systems in Teso sub-region are evolving from historical agro-pastoral systems to purely cropping in most areas. This greatly exposes the area to extreme vagaries of climate and environmental degradation. Bringing extension services closer to people will enable farmers to increase production, adapt better to extreme events of climate change and protect the environment for present and future generations”, he added.
The contribution will go towards strengthening women’s participation in agricultural production to ensure that they use climate resilient methods to produce quality food that fetches a good price. National and local institutions will also have their technical capacity strengthened to improve the Teso region’s preparation for shocks while creating stronger food systems.
“These interventions must translate into better production and better household incomes, especially for the most vulnerable such as children under five, pregnant and breastfeeding women,” WFP Uganda Country Representative, Abdirahman Meygag said. “As WFP, we are committed to providing interventions that address the root cause of food insecurity and malnutrition and we are proud to work with FAO and Norway to sustainably address climate vulnerability in Teso.”
The project will also bring agriculture extension services closer to the people in Teso and build the capacities of smallholder farmers and rural communities in the adoption of climate resilient agricultural technologies and livelihoods practices.