Millions Face Potential Food Crisis in West Africa

MISSISSAUGA, ON, Nov. 26, 2011 /CNW/ - World Vision staff in West Africa are warning that the countries of Niger, Mauritania and Mali are on the brink of major food shortages.

A number of international agencies, including the United States Agency for International Development and the European Commission's humanitarian relief organization, are reporing that inadequate rainfalls, combined with reports of grasshopper infestations, are causing major production shortfalls in rice and grain crops. This could lead to food shortfalls in West Africa in early 2012.

"The combination of problems affecting the region is reducing the likelihood of a successful harvest," warns David Mbugua, World Vision's Agriculture and Food Security Specialist. Mbugua adds that many of World Vision's Area Development Programs (ADPs) in the southern region of Mauritania are affected by the current situation.

World Vision staff in West Africa are working with the World Food Programme to develop a number of cash-for-work and food-for-work programs. These programs, which would provide support for nearly 65,000 people, are also being supplemented by increasing clinical support to assist a stream of mothers with malnourished children.

"World Vision is urging the international community to provide help for children and their families in the affected countries in West Africa," says Caroline Riseboro, Vice President, Marketing and Public Affairs for World Vision Canada. "By acting now, we can avoid a repeat of the humanitarian crisis that has occurred in Horn of Africa in 2011."

For more information about World Vision Canada, visit www.worldvision.ca

World Vision is a Christian relief, development and advocacy organization dedicated to working with children, families and communities to overcome poverty and injustice. World Vision serves all people regardless of religion, race, ethnicity or gender. Visit our News Centre at worldvision.ca

SOURCE World Vision Canada

For further information:

MEDIA CONTACTS:
Bob Neufeld - Tel. 905-565-6200 ext 3265, mobile 647-622-2045, Bob_Neufeld@worldvision.ca


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