The World Food Program (WFP), the food assistance arm of the United Nations, has received a €2 million ($2.4M USD) contrbution from Belgium to support its innovative projects, including blockchain solutions to fight hunger around the world.
The WFP works in more than 80 countries around the world, feeding people caught in conflict and disasters, and laying the foundations for a better future. In 2017, the WFP launched an ethereum-based payments pilot in Jordan, which was aimed at enhancing the efficiency and transparency of cash transfers to displaced Syrians in the country’s refugee camps.
“A blockchain pilot in refugee camps in Jordan is making WFP’s cash transfers to 100,000 vulnerable Syrians more efficient and transparent,” the WF said. “Piloted in collaboration with other agencies, the ‘Building Blocks’ project is delivering more for less, offering donors better value for money.”
Alexander De Croo, Belgium’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Development Cooperation, said that this year, more than 128 million people across the world will need humanitarian assistance and protection.
“Only by finding better ways to deliver aid more efficiently will we close the gap between requirements and aid delivery on the ground,” De Croo said. “Belgium lauds the efforts of WFP to come up with innovative solutions to save more lives and help more people in need.”
WFP Chief of Staff Rehan Asad stressed that amid rampant conflict and natural disasters, innovation was vital.
“The challenge of reaching Zero Hunger by 2030 is immense. Humanitarians must relentlessly look for ways to harness the most promising digital technologies in the service of the world’s most vulnerable people,” Asad said. “We are grateful to committed partners such as Belgium for helping us do just that.”
Earlier this month, the WFP and the Tunisian Ministry of Education partnered with bockchain supply chain startup Devery to implement a blockchain tracking system for the ministry’s school meals program, which serves approximately 6000 schools.
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