Almost two million Cubans affected by hurricanes Gustav and Ike – two of the worst disasters to strike the small island nation in the past 50 years – will receive vital assistance from the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) over the next six months.
Under the newly-approved emergency operation, WFP will provide $5.7 million in food rations, including rice, beans, vegetable oil, canned fish and CSB, a blended food compound of maize and soy fortified with vitamins and minerals.
The agency’s efforts are in support of the Cuban Government as it responds to communities needing food assistance in areas that bore the brunt of hurricane damage in late August and early September.
“WFP is playing an important role helping people who suffered great losses in the storms,” said Sonsoles Ruedas, WFP Representative in Cuba.
In addition to the rations, WFP will supply temporary food storage warehouses and liquid gas stoves to people who lost cooking facilities in the storms.
“As on previous occasions, we trust in the generosity of donors to carry out this operation which will allow us to provide assistance to affected populations,” Mr. Ruedas added.
A series of hurricanes – Fay, Gustav, Hanna and Ike – killed hundreds of people and caused billions of dollars of damage to infrastructure across the Caribbean. In addition to Cuba, Haiti and the Turks and Caicos Islands were among the hardest hit.