The World Food Programme (WFP) yesterday received from the Japanese government 165 million Japanese Yen (Rwf1.2 billion) which will go towards food and nutrition relief for over 55,000 Burundian refugees at Mahama Refugee Camp and the reception centres.
The official handover ceremony took place Thursday at the WFP compound in Kigali.
Jean Pierre de Margerie, WFP Rwanda representative and country director appreciated the generosity by the government and people of Japan to consider the lives of refugees.
“As the food and nutrition requirements of refugees in Rwanda remain critically important, the Japanese contribution will allow WFP to continue the general food distribution to 55,000 Burundian refugees in Rwanda,” Margerie said.
Takayuki Miyashita, the Japanese Ambassador to Rwanda, said that the support is a show of empathy and solidarity with vulnerable people.
“The people of Japan are acutely aware that nutrition is the very foundation of health and are therefore stepping up their support for the alleviation of hunger and malnutrition among the most vulnerable people,” he said.
WFP is currently providing food assistance to more than 150,000 refugees each month in Rwanda; these include 138,000 Burundian and Congolese women, men and children residing in refugee camps, and who entirely depend on assistance to meet their daily food needs.
They also support 12,200 school children from the host communities attending the same schools as the refugee children and one-off nine months food distribution to an average of 500 Rwandan returnees every month.
In addition to the monthly general food distribution to refugees, WFP provides specialised nutritious foods for the treatment of moderate acute malnutrition for children under five years of age; prevention of malnutrition for children aged six months to two years of age and pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers as well as people living with HIV/AIDS and TB patients in the camps.