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Sending money to people is empowering. When a disaster strikes, or conflict flares, money is often the first thing people need to buy food or pay for transport and temporary accommodation to get out of harm’s way. Not everyone needs the same thing at the same time. WFP sends people money to give them the flexibility to choose what they need, when they need it. People spend most of the money WFP sends them on food, but they also can use it to pay medical bills, rent or school fees. Sending people money means that they don’t need to make impossible trade-offs, like deciding to eat less so that they can keep all their children in school.  

WFP sends money to people in 72 countries, including places such as like Somalia, Yemen and Afghanistan, where markets are functioning but people can’t afford to buy food. When people spend money in local economies, it creates jobs and supports markets. In this way, people also benefit indirectly from WFP’s assistance.

Without empowering women, it will be impossible to end world hunger. In 2021, 150 million more women than men were hungry. Women were also disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, which pushed an additional 47 million women and girls into extreme poverty. Gender equality has moved further out of reach, and UN Women estimates that it will take 268 years to achieve gender equality. WFP is putting more money into women’s hands, because it is not only the right thing to do but the smart thing to do. We plan to help 10 million women get their own mobile money accounts by 2028. When women have their own accounts in their own names, the world changes for them. It is a gateway for them to access other financial services like loans, credit and insurance. They have the means to build a future for their families where they no longer need to rely on humanitarian assistance.

WFP works with governments and other partners to create sustainable change. As the world’s largest provider of humanitarian cash transfers, WFP supports governments and helps to develop national payment systems to boost social safety nets. During the COVID-19 pandemic, WFP supported 65 countries in scaling up or adapting existing social protection.