Feeding young dreams in Palestine

The World Food Programme helps Palestinian mothers raise healthy children in the middle of poverty and hardship.

WFP Middle East
Mar 30, 2017 · 3 min read

Mothers are always resourceful. They can make a small budget go a long way. They make a feast out of nothing, they whip up a huge dinner with simple and inexpensive ingredients. They just manage.

In Palestine, where food is too expensive for poorer families, the World Food Programme is supporting half a million non-refugees in Gaza, the West Bank and East Jerusalem through monthly food distributions or vouchers. For families, especially those supported by women, monthly assistance is not mere shopping; its an investment in their children’s health and future.

Eman receives an e-voucher she can exchange for a variety of locally-produced food staples in participating shops.

With basic food items secured such as bread, pulses and dairy products, Eman can spend what little money she has on cucumbers and tomatoes to prepare fresh salad for her daughter Tanseem.

Eman manages her family’s food needs as well as other basic necessities. Photo: WFP/Asmaa Nassar

Jamil and his mother Nuha purchasing diapers and toiletries at a local shop in Khan Yunis using their SAHTEIN card. WFP’s e-voucher platform can be used by other humanitarian organizations such as UNICEF and UNRWA to provide other non-food assistance rapidly and efficiently.

Jamil and his mother picking up toiletries at one of the participating shops. Photo: WFP/ Eyad al-Baba

The World Food Programme also uses voucher assistance to promote a healthy and more balanced diet through organizing nutrition awareness sessions. It helps mothers adopt a healthy diet on a small budget. Samar now makes a healthy and nutritious version of Palestinian mujadara following tips from these sessions.

Eman feeding her son her healthy version of a traditional Palestinian dish. Photo: WFP/ Eyad al-Baba

“Now I know that behind every healthy child is a healthy mother.”

While one mother learnt how to cook healthier, another mother learnt how to care better for her baby. Siham also attended nutrition sessions where she was introduced to the best practices of caring for her baby girl Suha and how to avoid health risks for both of them. As micro-nutrient deficiencies among pregnant and nursing mothers and children under five years increased in Palestine, family nutrition awareness is a top priority for the World Food Programme.

“Now I know that behind every healthy child is a healthy mother.”

Suha on her mother’s lap eating. Photo: WFP/ Samar Abuelou’f

World Food Programme Insight

Insight by The World Food Programme

World Food Programme Insight

Insight by The World Food Programme

WFP Middle East

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The United Nations World Food Programme is the largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide. Follow us for news from the Middle East and North Africa.

World Food Programme Insight

Insight by The World Food Programme