Global food crisis response
The current climate of spiralling food costs is likely to remain in the news for the forseeable future. The consequences are starting to become visible in the most vulnerable countries. Long term effects cannot be estimated at present.
According to the latest information of SOS Children the need for funds is great. It is estimated that by continent funds will be needed as follows: Africa - £1.8m; Latin America - £1m; Europe - £350,000 and Asia £419,000. SOS Children is making provision worldwide to deal with the increase in prices - as people around the world are in every day life.
A worsening situation for children
Huge increases in staple foods worldwide year on year from 2007 means that millions of children and families are being thrown into poverty.
Various factors have combined to increas the vulnerability of children and their families:
low income families are impacted most by increased cost of food; reducing meals leading to malnutrition; children sent to work to increase family income rather than attend school; greater risk of child abandonment as families find it harder to cope
factors leading to food crisis include; high cost of oil;increased demand for food from big countries; dependancy on food imports from countries with lack of local food production
developing countries with high consumer inflation (15%)for 2008 such as Venezuela, Ukraine, Ethiopia, Azerbaijan, Jamaica, Kazakhstan, Vietnam and Bolivia
inflation running at under 6% for countries such as China, India and Brazil while South Africa and Russia runs at approximately 10%
prices won't return to the low prices we have seen but should become stable
Commitment to children in the coming years
Step by step growth from 2009 to 2011 means SOS Children has planned to deal with the Food Crisis. Where there is need we plan to establish programmes to focus on children in a proactive way by finding long term responses. The greatest growth is predicated to be in Asia and Africa.
We aim to provide education support as a response during the next two years, ensuring that children have access to the relevant education. Support will be given to families torn between removing children from primary school or meeting the foods needs of the family. SOS Children is working towards implementing free primary education for children and later in 2008 we aim to have the most critically affected areas assessed
SOS Family Strengthening Programmes (FSPs) mean children can be reached and our aim is 60,000 children through the FSPs, where £5 a month will enable us to provide this additional educational support.
It is estimated that the additional costs for 2008 alone will be 2% - 4%. For the remainder of 2008 we aim to have conducted analysis to determine the countries worst affected and have in place plans for each country to ensure stability of the SOS Children's Villages and FSPs.
Worldwide, with the cost of food and high increases in energy costs, SOS Children aims to provide children with the best future in this time of crisis.