The United States Food for Peace program is coming to the aid of earthquake victims in Ecuador. An initial donation of half a million dollars is helping the UN World Food Programme feed those displaced by the 7.8 magnitude quake.
Food for Peace, which was started by President Dwight Eisenhower, is the main tool of the United States for feeding the hungry overseas. It’s run by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). Food for Peace is the single biggest donor to the UN World Food Programme’s relief work in over 70 nations.
The earthquake has left hundreds dead and over 25,000 people displaced. With the destruction has come food shortages.
According to a United Nations appeal for Ecuador, “Loss of livelihoods and assets, as well as damage to roads and markets in rural areas, have reduced an estimated 518,000 people ́s access to food.” As many families in Ecuador were already living in poverty, there is little for them to fall back on after a disaster.
The first Food for Peace donation is providing high energy biscuits for quick nutrients to those left hungry by the quake. In addition, food vouchers will be provided to people in areas where markets are still open.
Food for Peace officers are still assessing the damage in Ecuador and this will determine additional donations. Many impoverished families will likely need support for the coming months. There could be significant damage to agriculture in the earthquake zone.
The World Food Programme says it plans to feed at least 260,000 people in the coming months. This number could change at anytime. The food distributions will include hospitals, where food shortages have been reported.
Read the full article at Examiner.