About WFP Centre of Excellence against Hunger Brazil

The WFP Centre of Excellence against Hunger Brazil is a global hub for South-South public policy dialogue, learning, capacity building and technical assistance to promote action against hunger.

The WFP Centre of Excellence is the result of a partnership that has existed since 2011 between WFP and the Brazilian government. The office supports governments in Africa, Asia and Latin America in developing sustainable solutions to achieve zero hunger, programmes and public policies that are managed by national governments.

The WFP Centre of Excellence’s main objective is to bring together countries that face similar challenges in the areas of food and nutrition security, with a special focus on local purchases for school feeding programmes linked to family farming and nutrition.

Both remotely and in person, we continuously strengthen government capacities in more than 15 countries to change people’s lives and eradicate hunger.

We ensure that successful experiences in fighting hunger are available to any country, especially developing countries, for inspiration, learning and adaptation, through South-South and Triangular cooperation and a multi-sectoral approach.

We operate in the following areas:

  • School Feeding: School feeding programmes have a positive impact on the health and nutrition of children and adolescents, contribute to narrowing the gender gap in education and improve school attendance and performance indicators. When these programmes are tied to local food purchases, they create opportunities for family farmers and vulnerable communities, especially those in rural areas.
  • Nutrition: Improving nutrition is essential to ensuring child development and a healthy and productive adult life for everyone.
  • Social development: Ensuring nutrition and food security helps break the intergenerational cycle of hunger, contributing to reducing poverty and social inequality.
  • Smallholder farming: Increasing farmers’ access to stable markets for their food contributes to improving food production and reducing the vulnerability of rural households to poverty and hunger.
  • Comercial agriculture with Social Impact: Supporting small-scale, family-owned cotton farmers in African countries to move food produced in consortium with commodity crops, such as cotton, contributes to enhancing their food and nutritional security.
  • Capacity Strengthening: Our capacity strengthening work begins with people talking and listening to each other for strategic planning and resource mobilization. This means providing services on knowledge exchange and partnerships promotion among all necessary domestic and international stakeholders. These actions make sure that all national actors are incentivized to commit to the process and become personally invested in its success. This is what we mean when we speak of national ownership. Ownership is best achieved when it comes organically, rather than when it is imposed from an outside source. In every case, the WFP Centre of Excellence Brazil moves from analysis to action, with clear action plans and indicators for measuring progress. For this, we offer services on technical and policy advisory support and advocacy.
  • Research: Building evidence on good practices and the multiple benefits of fighting hunger is critical for more and more countries to commit to investing in sustainable hunger solutions. The relevance of public policy refers to how effective research results are in influencing decision makers in the policy making process.

  • 54 African countries committed to investing in school feeding, through the African Union
  • US$48 million being invested in school feeding by countries
  • 30 countries benefiting from continued technical assistance from the WFP Centre of Excellence Brazil
  • 18 countries developing national school feeding policies 100% of partner countries consider that the WFP Centre of Excellence?s exchanges and capacity strengthening activities are relevant and responsive to their needs
  • 72% acknowledge the WFP Centre of Excellence?s contribution to increasing the engagement and commitment of the various stakeholders with national school feeding initiatives
  • 67% acknowledge the WFP Centre of Excellence?s contribution to expanding technical and political support to school feeding
  • 52% of the countries supported consider the Centre as the main partner of choice for South-South cooperation and school feeding
  • WFP Centre of Excellence is present in 37% of WFP?s Country Strategic Plans, for capacity strengthening, technical assistance and South-South cooperation
  • Economies from countries with child undernutrition suffer an estimated annual loss equivalent to 1.9% to 16.5% of GDP (in Africa)
  • School feeding is a profitable investment presenting a benefit-cost ration ranging from 3:1 to 10:1 In the field
  • WFP Centre of Excellence?s technical and remote assistance and capacity strengthening activities can benefit more than 4 million school-going children and thousands of smallholder farmers participating in school feeding programmes

In the field:

WFP Centre of Excellence?s technical and remote assistance and capacity strengthening activities can benefit more than 4 million school-going children and thousands of smallholder farmers participating in school feeding programmes

For us, the essential ingredient to make capacity strengthening happen on the ground is to empower the whole of society beyond the traditional technical cooperation. Capacity strengthening is about enabling and reinforcing existing endogenous capabilities of national environments, institutions, and people, considering their policies and priorities.

We emphasize the role of long-lasting transformations through coherent policy and institutional reforms powered especially through direct or remote South-South and triangular cooperation.

We use local methods of consultation for better decision-making from the start. This allows national stakeholders to establish who will do what, who will ensure that what needs to be done gets done, and what will be the set-backs if it doesn?t.

This also enables domestic actors to tailor how WFP is going to contribute to the design and content of the process, situating an initiative within national development priorities.

Traditional technical cooperation may be appropriate in many instances to address short-term needs, but it tends to be ad-hoc and expensive without accomplishing national priorities. Strong capacity, locally generated and sustained, is essential to the success of any development enterprise.