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food security and natural resource management

Grappling with food insecurity

Food insecurity now affects close to the entire population of Afghanistan, and the situation has been exacerbated by a series of events in the past year or so. The economic crisis stemming from the change of government in August 2021 has continued unabated, and the largely agriculture-based economy has been affected by drought for a third consecutive year.

Funding shortfalls have led World Food Program (WFP) to cut ration sizes by one-third to households facing emergency-level (IPC Phase 4) food insecurity. And even when aid is available, the government’s December 2022 ban on women working in NGOs has made getting support to women and girls even more challenging than before. Despite these challenges, NAC continued to provide support to vulnerable households and farmers and natural resource management (NRM) and disaster risk reduction (DRR) committees to address food insecurity in our communities.

In 2022, NAC provided more than 165 000 farmers (13% female) and 210 000 households (50.4% female recipients) with agricultural inputs, such as seeds, fertilizer, and equipment, as well as trainings on nutrition and diet diversification. Through our 49 women’s self-help groups (SHGs), NAC also provided more than 5 000 households with cash-for-food assistance or food packages during the year.

Training lead-farmers

Through our lead-farmer initiative, which provides agricultural training and extension services, 121 lead-farmers provided training to 1 701 smallholder farmers (including 557 female farmers), supporting them to adopt climate-smart and innovative agriculture practices.

In 2022, NAC continued its support to 61 community disaster management committees (CDMCs) and district disaster management committees (DDMCs), providing training in preparedness and response to natural disasters and dialogue and conflict transformation, helping to build resilience to natural disasters. Additionally, 20 school-based emergency response teams (SERTs) were established and supported during the year.

Improving infrastructure

NAC supported communities to improve or construct agro-based infrastructure such as irrigation canals and check dams. During the year, 99 projects were implemented, boosting agricultural productivity and providing 4 097 temporary jobs in the process.

Through our sapling production farms, 196 500 saplings were produced during the year, which will be provided to our communities to promote forestation and reduce erosion.

Food Security, NRM and DRR form essential components of NAC’s work that have grown in relevance and importance as the social, economic, and environmental situation in Afghanistan continues to worsen.

Watch some of our films about food security and natural resource management here