The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) is providing more than $97 million in additional assistance to respond to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic in Africa, nearly $83 million of which is dedicated to address growing COVID-related food insecurity.
The new funding, announced on Thursday by Sarah Charles, an assistant to USAID Administrator Samantha Power, during the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) Humanitarian Affairs Segment, will be used specifically for COVID-19 fight in Nigeria, Niger, Somalia, DRC, Mali, Uganda and Madagascar.
“This new funding will provide urgently needed food and nutrition assistance, health care, protection services, and psychosocial support for people in seven countries across Africa,” USAID said in a statement.
To date, USAID said it has provided more than $1.5 billion in humanitarian assistance to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic around the world.
The new funding includes:
- Nearly $3.2 million in additional assistance for the Democratic Republic of the Congo to provide lifesaving health care, nutrition support, and protection for the most vulnerable, as well as rehabilitating health care facilities, and strengthening the resilience of communities affected by conflict and the pandemic.
- $2 million in additional assistance for Madagascar to provide urgently needed food assistance, agriculture support, and water, sanitation, and hygiene supplies to drought affected populations impacted by the pandemic.
- More than $9.2 million for Mali to provide food and nutrition assistance to people facing the compounding impacts of the pandemic and the lean season, and to facilitate the transportation of humanitarian workers and cargo to hard-to-reach areas.
- $6 million for Niger to provide food assistance and the treatment of moderate acute malnutrition.
- $35 million for Nigeria to meet basic food needs for the most vulnerable and to safely facilitate the transportation and logistics of humanitarian workers and supplies to hard-to-reach areas.
- $20 million in additional assistance for Somalia to provide emergency food assistance, including rations of sorghum, yellow split peas, and vegetables, as well as nutrition assistance for children, pregnant and lactating women, and other vulnerable people facing malnutrition.
- $22 million for Uganda to provide food assistance to refugees.