The World Food Programme (WFP) has appealed to various governments to consider the plights of women and girls in making policy decisions and programmes toward tackling hunger and poverty.
A statement by WFP in Abuja on Friday to commemorate the 2019 International Women’s Day, said that considering women was vital to achieving a zero hunger world by 2030.
WFP noted that reducing inequalities and removing barriers that excluded women from influencing development in all sectors would also advance food security.
It said the theme of the day, `think equal, build smart, innovate for change’, was in line with the organisation’s gender transformative approach aimed at giving everyone a life of dignity, choice and opportunities.
“Our integrated programmes using cash transfers contribute to reducing gender-based violence, strengthening women’s decision making and increasing women’s leadership.
“International Women’s Day reminds us about the immense and valuable contribution women make toward a more peaceful, prosperous and well-fed world.
“All around the globe, WFP programmes help empower women so they can have more opportunities not just to improve their lives, but those of their families, communities and nations,’’ it said.
It quoted Ms Myrta Kaulard, the WFP Representative in Nigeria, as saying that the organisation’s milling machines project in Borno State, demonstrated how working with women contributed to food and nutrition security.
“Under the programme, 5,000 displaced families in Borno received 766 milling machines from WFP to ease problems associated with processing grains.
“The milling machines also save time and energy for the users, especially for vulnerable women and girls who face a lot of difficulties in accessing milling services in the conflict-affected communities.
“Our Food for Assets projects have empowered women who now are able to work in their communities, feed their families, sell their produce and contribute towards the development of themselves.’’
WFP also commended the Federal Government’s school feeding programme, adding that it had demonstrated an increase in nutrition and education among girl students.
It said the programme had contributed to a decrease in teenage pregnancy and child marriage.
WFP said noted that organisation was working in over 80 countries around the world, feeding people caught in conflicts and disasters as well as laying foundations for a better future.