To mark 10 years of service together, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) and World Food Program USA are jointly funding an emergency response hub in Barbados.
The project, which will enable more agile disaster response by WFP and others throughout the Caribbean, is made possible by a contribution of US$4.3 million — $2 million from the Church and an additional $2.3 million from World Food Program USA. The hub will be completed this summer.
“We are honored and grateful to celebrate 10 years of collaboration with the World Food Programme,” said Bishop Gérald Caussé, the Church’s Presiding Bishop. “Together, we have been able to help millions in need. These efforts reflect our dedication to the two great commandments. We express our love for God by extending our help to His children, regardless of location or background.”
Caribbean countries are often hit by natural disasters such as hurricanes, floods, droughts and volcanic eruptions. But they do not have enough resources to respond quickly to these emergencies. This new logistics hub will help change that. It will be a center for disaster relief coordination and materials pre-positioning. Emergency food and other supplies such as tarps, water, blankets, cots and hygiene kits will be stored in the warehouse. When a disaster happens, the supplies can be sent to affected countries.
“We couldn’t imagine a better way to mark our 10th anniversary with the Church than to do what we do best — build on our powerful relationship to help communities in need,” said Barron Segar, World Food Program USA President and CEO. “We are truly humbled and grateful for the Church’s profound generosity and steadfast commitment during the past decade to help us end global hunger. The Church’s support has helped transform millions of lives, helping at-risk communities to become self-reliant and build food security against incredible odds.”
Lola Castro, WFP’s regional director in Latin America and the Caribbean, called the new logistics hub a “pivotal step” to better disaster response across the Caribbean.
“WFP is deeply thankful to WFP USA and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for their crucial funding, reflecting our shared commitment to humanitarian aid and resilience,” Castro said.
World Food Program USA leadership are currently in Salt Lake City for a quarterly board meeting — and to participate in a service project on Thursday, February 8, at the Bishops’ Central Storehouse. They and more than 150 local young adults and students will package more than 900 meals for Tabitha’s Way food pantry.
The Church and WFP have locked arms in service since 2014. We recently showcased how this collaboration is reducing food insecurity in Liberia — a country still trying to overcome a 14-year civil war (1989–2003) that destroyed national infrastructure and basic social services.
WFP has used funds from the Church of Jesus Christ (including the faith’s 2022 donation of $32 million) to provide food and other critical assistance to many other of the world’s most vulnerable people — including mothers and young children — in 46 countries.
This relationship between WFP and the Church of Jesus Christ comes at a critical time. Some 333 million people around the world face severe hunger — with 47 million on the brink of famine. Even so, government funding of humanitarian work is declining, forcing WFP to stretch every dollar to help as many people as possible. Without a dedicated support network (which includes the Church), WFP could not meet the needs of the world’s most vulnerable communities.
About the World Food Programme
The United Nations World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian organization, saving lives in emergencies and using food assistance to build a pathway to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change.
World Food Program USA, a 501(c)(3) organization based in Washington, D.C., proudly supports the mission of the United Nations World Food Programme by mobilizing American policymakers, businesses and individuals to advance the global movement to end hunger. Our leadership and support help to bolster an enduring American legacy of feeding families in need around the world. Learn more about World Food Program USA’s mission at wfpusa.org.
About Humanitarian Services of the Church of Jesus Christ
The Church’s 2022 annual report on caring for those in need shows that the faith’s efforts to care for those in need included more than $1 billion in expenditures, 6.3 million hours volunteered and 3,692 humanitarian projects in 190 countries and territories.
The humanitarian efforts of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints relieve suffering, foster self-reliance and provide opportunities for service. The Church follows the admonition of Jesus Christ to feed the hungry and care for those in need.
This humanitarian outreach is made possible by the generous donations and volunteerism of Latter-day Saints and friends of the faith. The Church gives assistance without regard to race, religious affiliation or nationality. Aid is based on the core principles of personal responsibility, community support, self-reliance and sustainability.