UAE’s ‘100 Million Meals’ campaign allocates additional 19 million meals for Gaza Strip

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In collaboration with the United Nations World Food Programme, low-income families and individuals will receive food vouchers, equivalent to 19 million meals. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: As part of the ‘100 Million Meals’ campaign, Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives (MBRGI) on Sunday announced the allocation of an additional 19 million meals to the Gaza Strip.

In collaboration with the United Nations World Food Programme, low-income families and individuals will receive food vouchers, equivalent to 19 million meals, to empower them to purchase a variety of nutritious and locally produced food.

The distribution comes in support to vulnerable groups including those impacted by the recent violence that displaced thousands in Palestine, including 77,000 who took refuge in UN schools and headquarters and additional 40,000 who fled to friends and family homes in the Gaza Strip. WFP’s e-vouchers enable beneficiaries to shop from a network of contracted supermarkets in the amounts that sustain their households.

The 100 Million Meals campaign, launched earlier in Ramadan to provide food aid for disadvantaged individuals and families across 30 countries, had already allocated 9 million meals to be distributed in Palestine. Food aid has so far reached beneficiaries in the West Bank.

Support for a month

Sara Al Nuaimi

Sara Al Nuaimi, Director of MBRGI, said: “About 70 per cent of families in the Gaza Strip are facing food insecurity, according to WFP figures. The additional food support, provided through the 100 Million Meals campaign, is a message of solidarity from the UAE to those most affected by this difficult reality.”

Mageed Yahia

Mageed Yahia, Director of WFP office in the UAE and Representative to the GCC, said: “This funding will enable WFP to continue providing a much-needed support to food insecure families who have been displaced and staying at hosting families and many others whose homes and livelihoods have been affected.”

Food access in Palestine

High poverty and unemployment rates in Palestine hinder families and individuals from accessing food made available in markets. Of the total 5 million population, two million people — 1.4 million in Gaza and 600,000 in the West Bank — are estimated to be severely food insecure. The COVID-19 pandemic has accentuated the already poor socioeconomic conditions of Palestinians, particularly vulnerable groups including women, children, the elderly, and people of determination.

100 Million Meals

To carry out the 100 Million Meals campaign, MBRGI is collaborating with the WFP, the Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum and Humanitarian and Charity Establishment, the Food Banking Regional Network, and local charity organisations and authorities in the 30 beneficiary countries.

With the help of 12 food banks and nine humanitarian institutions, MBRGI ensures food parcels, carrying basic food items, are delivered to the doorstep of vulnerable communities in 30 countries.

The 100 Million Meals drive concluded in May with more than double its target, raising donations to provide food parcels, equivalent to 216 million meals, in less than a month.