Food for Work - Integrated Food Security Programmes - Advantages and Limitations

  • Helps immediately to reduce acute food deficits for poor people.
  • Supports families or communities to become food self-reliant.
  • Compensates food deficits during acute food shortages or losses of productive infrastructure after war or natural disaster.
  • Ensures the implementation of communal infrastructure.
  • Supports family income and alleviates poverty and food insecurity.
  • Mobilises human resources, strengthens community participation and institution building.
  • Supports the coping mechanism of poor families and create favourable conditions for long term food security.
  • Reduces migration of people to other districts during periods of food stress, because they have positive (but short term) effects on employment and income generation.
  • Creates dependency and inhibits other development initiatives when applied inappropriately or over too long time periods.
  • Leads to expectations of payment for the involvement of other community initiatives, which are normally based on voluntary participation or solidarity.
  • Produces negative impacts on local food production through price and labour disincentive effects.
  • Creates economic or social infrastructure to which the community would not have been given priority without FFW. This limits the voluntary maintenance and sustainability of the created assets of the community for development or long term food security impacts.
  • Leads to high costs and requires complex managerial and administrative procedures for donor agencies, since they are often responsible for ensuring proper transportation, storage and distribution of the food rations.