The U.S. Government Announces a $7.5 Million Contribution to the World Food Programme for Food Assistance in the West Bank and Gaza

Nablus, West Bank – U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) West Bank and Gaza Mission Director Dave Harden announced today a $7.5 million U.S. contribution to the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) for food assistance in the West Bank and Gaza.

This contribution will provide emergency food assistance to 32,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) currently in UNRWA shelters in Gaza and for food distributions to another 95,000 people in Gaza. The money will also be used for food distribution to 60,000 vulnerable people in the West Bank and to support an electronic voucher program benefiting 35,000 people. These projects allow a rapid response to critical humanitarian needs in Gaza, and also provide continued support to food insecure Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza. The electronic food voucher project in the West Bank is an innovative way to provide food assistance while supporting the development of small businesses and the local economy through the procurement of locally produced foods.

“This commitment highlights the continued support of the American people to address the needs of the Palestinian people” said Dave Harden, USAID West Bank and Gaza Mission Director.

The announcement was attended by Nablus Governor Akram Rajoub, WFP Deputy Representative and Country Director Paul Skoczylas and Global Communities Country Director Lana Abu Hijleh.

“WFP is thankful for the ongoing support of the American people to meet the needs of food insecure Palestinians. This (past) summer, WFP could rapidly scale-up emergency food assistance thanks to the U.S. ongoing support. WFP’s rapid response was built on years of partnership with the U.S. With this contribution we will continue to respond together to meet the food needs in Gaza and the West Bank” said Paul Skoczylas, WFP Deputy Representative and Country Director.

“We have been partnering with WFP to deliver food assistance to the most needy in Gaza and the West Bank for more than twelve years. We have worked as one team with WFP and USAID during the last emergency in Gaza ensuring food is distributed even under the most dangerous conditions. Beneficiaries we reach are always appreciative of the continued assistance provided. The additional funding will definitely be of great help,” said Lana Abu Hijleh, Global Communities Country Director in West Bank and Gaza.

The new $7.5 million commitment is in addition to $12 million in US contributions to the WFP since July 2014, which provided more than 7,000 metric tons of food to more than 330,000 beneficiaries in Gaza in a partnership between the Palestinian Authority, USAID, WFP, UNRWA, and Global Communities.

The U.S. Government, through USAID, is the leading provider of bilateral development assistance to the Palestinians, having provided more than $4.6 billion since 1994 for programs in the areas of democracy and governance; education; health and humanitarian assistance; private enterprise; and water resources and infrastructure.

For more information on U.S. assistance, please contact USAID Press Office at wbgpro@usaid.gov or call 03-5114845.