World Food Programme (WFP) is the world's largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide.
Consistent with its mandate WFP continues to:
- use food aid to support economic and social development;
- meet refugee and other emergency food needs, and the associated logistics support; and
- promote world food security in accordance with the recommendations of the United Nations and Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO).
In autumn 1993, WFP set up its country office in Tbilisi. Later on, a sub-office was established in Poti and Gori to support operations throughout the country.
Since 1993, a total of 222,000 metric tonnes of various food commodities have been mobilized to assist over 800,000 vulnerable people in Georgia. The food benefited thousands of destitute people, Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), Chechen refugees, school children, tuberculosis clients, people living with HIV and rural small scale farming households under various relief and recovery components. The overall value of WFP food assistance amounted to USD 124 million.
In addition, WFP provided extensive logistics support during 1994-1997 to stabilize the region’s transport infrastructure and ensure the safe delivery of food aid to three Caucasus Countries. WFP assisted the Georgian ports of Poti and Batumi and the Caucasian Railways with USD 20 million worth of technical assistance.
The initial work of WFP in the Caucasus aimed at improving the coordination of food aid and ensuring the timely delivery of humanitarian supplies to IDPs and other most vulnerable groups of beneficiaries. In so doing, WFP has played its part in promoting stability, transition and development in the region.
Starting from 1999, WFP has shifted its assistance programmes from emergency relief towards recovery oriented interventions. The agency focused the bulk of its resources on rehabilitation of agricultural infrastructure through food-for-work and cash-for-work activities. Limited relief assistance, however, has been maintained for the most destitute groups of beneficiaries.
The 2008 conflict has created a new pool of vulnerable people in the conflict zone and surrounding areas in need of immediate and medium-term social protection. WFP ensured emergency food assistance IDPs and local war-affected populations. In addition direct cash assistance was provided to IDPs accommodated in communal centres and new settlements; food-for-work and cash-for-work activities were undertaken for IDPs in settlement areas and local vulnerable populations in the communities hosting IDPs and those adjacent to the conflict zone.
In July 2009, WFP launched a new phase of its protracted relief and recovery operation (PRRO) to support 130,000 people with 17,100 metric tons of food and US$6.3 million cash assistance during 2009-2011. Total budget of this two-year PRRO stands at US$23 million.