As armed conflicts, mass displacement, and disasters take an ever heavier toll, humanitarian intervention remains a cornerstone of global governance. Over five decades spent battling crises, the World Food Programme (WFP) has accrued vast expertise and capacity in supply chain, engineering and emergency telecommunications – often in the most challenging environments. This experience affords WFP the ability to extend its capacity to also support emergency preparedness and medium-long term development efforts, depending on the local context.
In the face of tight funding and high expectations of efficiency, the humanitarian community is increasingly required to act in sync, streamline processes and pool resources. Working closely with private sector partners, WFP is making assets and functionalities available to fellow humanitarian operators, allowing them to save more lives, faster, and at lower cost to donors and the environment.
Thanks to WFP’s global demand for food, goods and services, we are to offer competitive market rates, timely delivery, and cost efficiencies for our partners.
In addition, WFP leads the Logistics Cluster and the Emergency Telecommunications Cluster (ETC), and co-leads the Food Security Cluster. As lead agency, WFP coordinates responses to large-scale emergencies on behalf of the wider humanitarian community. The Logistics Cluster and ETC facilitate access to shared logistics and telecommunication services. The Food Security Cluster coordinates the food security response during a humanitarian crisis, addressing issues of food availability, access and utilisation.
Services provided by WFP on behalf of UN agencies, NGOs and government institutions
Procurement of food, relief items, and operational equipment
Special nutritious food for children, water and sanitation items, mobile warehouses, vehicles, and emergency telecommunications equipment: these are examples of items that WFP can procure for partners.
Emergency stockpiling and pre-positioning
WFP offers storage for a variety of food and relief items: from family tents to cooking sets and operational equipment. These can be stored in the UN Humanitarian Response Depots (UNHRD), WFP’s network of six strategically-located global response hubs in disaster-prone regions, or in the hundreds of WFP-managed warehouses in the deep field. Upon request, WFP also provides cold storage for temperature-sensitive products such as medicines.
WFP works with local, regional and global networks of ocean, land, and air transport providers to deliver life-saving food assistance and relief items for its own operations, as well as partners.
Telecommunications and IT services
Upon request of humanitarian partners, WFP deploys telecommunications and IT experts to establish vital connections in hard-to-access locations, enabling aid workers to keep providing vital support to the people we serve.
Air passenger transport
In over 15 countries, WFP offers critical air passenger services to aid workers to areas that are currently unreachable by any other way, whether due to insecurity, lack of infrastructure or viable commercial aviation options. Through the United Nations Humanitarian Air Service (UNHAS), WFP ensures humanitarian actors are able to continue supporting the many vulnerable families and communities that require assistance.
Warehousing and handling
As a standalone service, or part of a service package, WFP manages and hires local companies and labourers to ensure the proper storage and handling of food and relief items in over 75 countries.
WFP has industry-leading expertise in humanitarian engineering, which it provides to governments, NGOs, and UN agencies upon request. These services range from the provision of access infrastructure, such as airstrip rehabilitations and bridge reconstruction, to emergency preparedness infrastructure, and sustainable energy solutions.
Medical wellness and accommodation services
Well-being of humanitarian staff is a precondition to ensure those we serve receive the assistance they need. This includes the use of WFP-organized contracts for vaccination of field-based staff, accommodation in WFP guesthouses in the field, and a new methodology to carry out ergonomic workstation assessments remotely.