ACF International Annual Report 2007 - Action Against Hunger

ACF International Annual Report 2007 - Action Against Hunger

Action Against Hunger

ACF International Network 2007 Annual Report


Comprised of five independent, non-profit organizations with headquarters in London, Madrid, Montréal,

New York, and Paris, the ACF International Network (ACF-IN) saves the lives of malnourished children while

providing families with access to safe water and sustainable solutions to hunger. ACF-IN bridges emergency

relief with longer-term development, intervening in emergency situations of conflict, natural disaster, and

chronic food insecurity. Our 6,000+ field staff—seasoned professionals and technical experts in nutrition,

water and sanitation, public health, and food security—carry out life-saving programs in some 40 countries.

These programs reach nearly 5 million people a year, restoring dignity, self-sufficiency, and independence to

vulnerable populations around the world.


Chairman: Raymond Debbane

Executive Director: Nan Dale


President: Denis Metzger

Executive Director: François Danel


President: José Luis Leal Maldonado

Executive Director: Olivier Longué


Chairman: Paul Wilson

Executive Director: Jean-Michel Grand


Action Against

Hunger Core


The ACF International Charter

affirms six core principles that all

staff members worldwide pledge to

uphold in carrying out their work.




Free and Direct

Access to Victims



Since our first forays into the field of global hunger, almost 30 years

ago, Action Against Hunger / Accion Contra el Hambre / Action Contre

la Faim (ACF) has occupied a singular place among international

organizations. Whether responding to natural disasters, entrenched

poverty, or seasonal hunger, our teams have been at the forefront of

humanitarian action for nearly three decades, fostering principled,

community-centered solutions for millions of people around the world.

With each year’s new challenges, ACF teams refine our programs and

develop context-specific strategies, and 2007 was no exception. From

the expanding crisis in Darfur, to Hurricane Felix in Central America,

Cyclone Sidr in Bangladesh, and a massive earthquake in Peru, our

teams adapted existing programs or launched new efforts as the

situation dictated. Frequently, those teams went into areas where other

organizations hesitated to go because of unstable political conditions.

Despite growing insecurity in Darfur, ACF’s presence guaranteed

life-saving services for tens of thousands of families, including vital

nutrition programs, distributions of hygiene kits, and improved access

to clean water and sanitation facilities. In response to the various

natural disasters, Action Against Hunger conducted rapid assessments

and responded with immediate assistance. As these crises transitioned

into post-emergency phases, ACF remained to help restore

contaminated fields, repair water points and sanitation facilities, and

restock productive assets like seeds, tools, and fishing nets.

ACF’s broad solutions aim at enhancing livelihoods and incomegenerating

opportunities, boosting food production, and restoring

health and independence to distressed communities—vital services

whose life-saving value can’t be overstated. For communities

recovering from natural disasters, displaced populations living in

camps, or communities faced with cycles of drought and hunger, selfsufficiency

is the most powerful tool for rebuilding livelihoods, and

Action Against Hunger’s teams provide people with the tools and knowhow

to work their way back to normalcy.

action against hunger


President: Diane Bussandri

Executive Director: Frédéric Boisrond


On behalf of the Boards of Directors at each of the ACF headquarters,

I am proud to present this report highlighting some of our key

accomplishments in 2007.

Reflects the leadership of each ACF

headquarters as of December 31, 2008

To view our financial information, please visit

Cover photos: ACF-Afghanistan, courtesy I. I. Eshragi/Agence VU; ACF-Sri Lanka, courtesy J. J. Lapegue


Our comprehensive approach to

global hunger delivers a range of

community-centered solutions to

populations in crisis, like this young

girl’s community in Afghanistan.


Chairman, International Chairmen’s Council

ACF International Network


For almost

30 years, Action

Against Hunger

has led the way

in defining the

idea of global




Our comprehensive solutions to global hunger are needs-based,

context-specific, and customized through direct community

participation. While the programs we run may vary from one country

to the next, they all share this defining set of characteristics:

Comprehensive: Action Against Hunger integrates activities in

nutrition, food security, water and sanitation, health, and advocacy.

To tackle the underlying causes of hunger, we address the social,

organizational, technical, and resource concerns essential to a

community’s well-being.

Lasting Solutions: Action Against Hunger works to ensure our

programs can be sustained without us. By integrating our programs

with local and national systems we transform effective, short-term

interventions into sustainable, long-term solutions.

Community-Centered: A community-centered approach is key

to building local capacity for the management and maintenance of

our programs. Through training, workshops, technical support, and

mentoring, Action Against Hunger builds local capacity and cultivates

community know-how for the long-run.

Independent & Impartial: As a nongovernmental humanitarian

agency, ACF is apolitical. But when it comes to human suffering, we are

not neutral: We do our utmost to deliver effective assistance whenever

and wherever it’s most needed.

Full Accountability & Transparency: Action Against Hunger

directly implements and oversees all of its programs, requiring

full access to communities targeted for assistance. Committed to

transparency and full disclosure, ACF ensures key financial information

is publicly available and that its programs undergo external evaluation

to assess their impact.


Today, over 850 million people still

suffer from hunger and more than

one billion people lack access to

clean drinking water. Through an

integrated approach incorporating

Nutrition & Health, Food Security,

Water, Sanitation & Hygiene, and

Advocacy, Action Against Hunger

responds efficiently and effectively

to help vulnerable populations

around the world.

Nutrition and Health:

Nutrition programs aim at

assessing, preventing and treating

acute malnutrition among the most

vulnerable populations, especially

young children and pregnant or

lactating women. Health programs

consist of fighting diseases linked

with malnutrition.

ACF’s programs

provide immediate

assistance and

long-term relief

to malnourished

children and

their families.

FOOD SECURITY: Action Against

Hunger’s food security programs

include both emergency programs

– such as emergency food

distributions – as well as longterm

programs. These programs

aim at boosting agricultural and/

or economic activity providing

populations with sufficient access

to food of a satisfactory quality

and improving self-sufficiency.


HYGIENE: These programs

aim at guaranteeing access to

drinking water and good sanitary

conditions (by providing wells,

water distribution networks,

latrines, hygiene education

sessions, etc). In 2007 about two

million people benefitted from

these ACF programs.

Our food security

programs offer

a broad range

of solutions for

generating income

and food production.

ADVOCACY: Action Against Hunger

raises awareness about hunger

and seeks to alert and influence

the international community when

fundamental rights such as access

to water or food are violated. Action

Against Hunger’s advocacy efforts

aim at affecting institutional and

cultural changes to help create a

world without hunger.

ACF ensures

effective assistance

by working directly

with communities

to customize lasting

solutions to hunger.

action against hunger ACF INTERNATIONAL NETWORK


ACF-Nepal, courtesy S. Remael. (From left): ACF-Zimbabwe, courtesy J. Lapegue; ACF-Afghanistan, courtesy I. Eshragi/Agence VU; ACF-Malawi, courtesy J.E. Atwood/Agence VU

















palestinian territories





sierra leone



ivory coast






democratic republic

of the congo (drc)









sri lanka


This map reflects the reach of the ACF

International Network as of December 31, 2007.

For the most up-to-date look at our current

programs, please visit

The breadth of Action Against Hunger’s international expertise

goes beyond the scope of our current programs. We have worked

in many other countries, including Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina,

Cambodia, Cameroon, North Korea, Mozambique, Macedonia,

Rwanda, Tanzania, Western Sahara, and Zambia.

(From left): ACF-Guatemala, courtesy B. Grignet/Agence VU;

ACF-Philippines, courtesy J. Lapegue; ACF-Burundi, courtesy E. Simiand; ACF-Nepal, courtesy S. Remael; ACF-DR Congo, courtesy J. Lapegue



Sudan has been wracked by multiple

conflicts since independence. The

longest of these was the 21-year civil

war between north and south, which

left two million people dead, four

million displaced, and most of the

South’s infrastructure destroyed. With

one of the highest rates of malnutrition

in the world, Sudan struggled to

rebuild after the signing of the historic

2005 peace agreement. Yet significant

steps towards regional stability were

threatened by ongoing conflict in

Sudan’s troubled western region of

Darfur. Since 1985, ACF has worked

with distressed communities in both

the north and south of Sudan, as well

as Darfur. These interventions continued

in 2007, and included ongoing

maintenance of nutritional feeding

centers and community-based treatment

of malnutrition, and distribution

of food, as well as measures to rebuild

infrastructure and address causes of

chronic hunger, such as psychosocial

support, construction and rehabilitation

of granaries, support for irrigation

systems, construction of latrines, and

rehabilitation of water tanks, wells,

and manual pumps.


In Uganda’s troubled north, rebels in

the Lord’s Resistance Army continued

to terrorize the countryside, abducting

children and displacing some 2.5

million people—80 percent of the

population—into sprawling camps. In

2007, some of the displaced returned

to their ancestral lands for the first

time in two decades, but even this

hopeful development created new

humanitarian challenges. Despite the

improvement in the political situation,

most northerners continued to live in

refugee camps and depend on humanitarian

aid assistance. ACF has worked

in Uganda since 1980 and played a

pivotal role in reducing malnutrition,

providing safe drinking water, and ensuring

food security for the displaced.

Throughout 2007, staff continued to

maintain therapeutic feeding centers

and monitor the nutritional situation

in the camps, as well as provide

training in health and hygiene to camp

residents. ACF staff also worked to

rehabilitate water points outside the



Seven years of drought and desertification

have had serious consequences in

Afghanistan, plunging the population

into a state of extreme food insecurity.

On top of 25 years of conflict, the

Afghani population is struggling to

rebuild a country in desperate need of

international assistance, investment in

infrastructure, and drastic improvements

in security, agricultural production,

and clean water access. Throughout

2007, ACF’s teams continued

to run the humanitarian programs

that, since 1995, have helped Afghans

strengthen local livelihoods and improve

methods for coping with changing

conditions. The staff was thus

uniquely qualified to act in the face of

the continuing drought. In November,

they organized a massive distribution

of vegetables and grains in the Central

Afghanistan province of Day Kundi,

providing lifesaving assistance to the

population as winter closed in.


Building on a 20-year track record

in Ethiopia, Action Against Hunger

continued to work with food insecure

communities in regions affected by

climate change and poor agricultural

cycles. The deteriorating state of water

points in the country’s Southeast

exacerbated outbreaks of water-borne

diseases to epidemic proportions.

In the town of Kebri Déhar, in the

Ogaden region, for example, local

authorities alerted ACF staff to a growing

epidemic of diarrhea in January

of 2007. Through a rapid evaluation,

ACF found that Kebri Dehar’s population

of 36,000 could draw potable

water from only two of the town’s

21 fresh water wells. ACF’s response

addressed the immediate problem as

well as the underlying causes of this

recurring epidemic: the staff set up an

emergency center to treat the ill and

then began work on a water treatment

center to improve the quality of water

available to the town.

Sri Lanka

Operating since 1997, Action Against

Hunger’s Sri Lanka program has

worked with populations affected

by the civil war as well as communities

devastated by the 2004 tsunami.

Another tragedy took place on August

4, 2006, when 17 ACF staff members

were shot to death at the organization’s

offices in Muttur during fighting

between rebels and government forces.

ACF’s therapeutic

programs target

children under five as

the most vulnerable

to malnutrition.

ACF has struggled ever since to ensure

a proper investigation into this heinous

crime—one of the more shocking

atrocities committed against humanitarian

field staff to date. Following a

four-month hiatus, Sri Lankan operations

continued so that the organization

could monitor legal proceedings

and the search for the perpetrators. To

date, no one has been arrested for these

murders, and Action Against Hunger

has suspended its Sri Lankan operations.


Since 1998, Action Against Hunger’s

Colombia program has helped displaced

families and vulnerable communities

meet basic needs in the face of

rampant violence that has blighted this

country for decades. Although Colombia

is rich in natural resources, some

64 percent of the population lives in

poverty and needs external assistance.

Throughout 2007, Action Against

Hunger staff continued to deliver

programs in nutrition, food security,

and water and sanitation. In July, the

We work directly with

local populations

to identify existing

coping mechanisms

and develop

appropriate solutions

Colombia staff shifted into high gear

after the strongest seasonal rainfall in

eleven years caused massive flooding in

the region of La Mojana. Immediately

after the flooding, ACF distributed

food items including 440 tons of rice,

110 tons of sugar, 110 tons of cooking

oil, and 110 tons of vegetables to 13

municipalities, meeting the basic food

needs of 55,000 people. By the end of

the year, and following further flooding,

ACF staff were working to provide

additional help to people who had lost

their harvests and reserve food supplies

in the disaster.


After more than 30 years of bloody

conflict, the 2002 peace agreement

established an opening for recovery,

development, and the gradual return

of displaced Angolans to their former

communities. However, five years

later, instead of gradual progress,

the country’s living conditions have

deteriorated even further; some 70%

of the population now lives in poverty.

Action Against Hunger has worked in

ACF’s 30 years of

humanitarian action

ensures expertise

in a wide range

of countries and

cultural contexts.

action against hunger


(From left) ACF-Guatemala, courtesy B. Grignet; ACF-D.R.Congo, courtesy Burger/Phanie; ACF-Cambodia,

ACF-DR Congo, courtesy Burger/Phanie

courtesy J. Lapegue

(From left): ACF-Afghanistan, courtesy J. Lapegue; ACF-Guatemala, courtesy B. Grignet/Agence VU; ACF-Sri Lanka, courtesy J. Lapegue



the country since 1995, assisting with

agricultural development and access to

clean water, and building the capacity

of Angolan health authorities to

address nutrition and HIV prevention.

In 2007, the team continued to assist

with Angola’s rehabilitation, working

with local communities to provide

nutrition training to health workers,

distribute seeds and tools and establish

seed banks, provide training in sustainable

agricultural practices, construction

and maintenance of latrines, and self

management of water points, construct

and rehabilitate wells, and support

training for municipal water brigades.

The Democratic Republic of


For the past three years, the D.R.

Congo has been in transition from a

brutal civil war to peace. The elections

of 2006 brought stability to the

country’s political landscape, although

40 years of corrupt regimes and two

civil wars have taken their toll on civil

society. The country’s sheer size partly

explains the slow progress in improving

living standards—communities in

dire need are spread over thousands of

miles. Humanitarian crises still occur

with regularity, exposing pockets of

acute malnutrition, lack of basic health

care, and widespread food insecurity.

ACF has actively delivered solutions

in the D.R. Congo since 1996. In

2007, ACF teams, working in 15 active

bases, took advantage of growing

political stability to facilitate displaced

individuals’ return to their homes, and

to help them recover nutritional and

economic self-sufficiency. ACF also

worked with government agencies,

including the Ministry of Health and

its National Nutrition Program (PRO-

NANUT) to train health workers and

to improve food policy and nutritional

surveillance throughout the country.


Niger remains one of the poorest

countries in the world, although its

status was upgraded from the last to

the third to last country on the UN-

DP’s Human Development Index in

2007. With its populace and economy

susceptible to climatic shocks, Niger

faces regular climate-induced food

crises and cyclical hunger. In 2005,

malfunctioning markets linking Niger

with its neighbors Nigeria, Mali and

Burkina Faso, combined with drought

to bring about a spike in food prices

that contributed to a major food crisis.

While the situation stabilized in

2006 and 2007, it did not necessarily

improve. Malnutrition is still critically

prevalent, mainly due to traditional

care-giving practices, limited health

and education services, and vulnerable

livelihood systems. Action Against

Hunger’s presence remains crucial to

improve the treatment and prevention

of malnutrition. Components of our

intervention include capacity building

for local ministry of health structures,

strengthening of agro-pastoral

production, introduction of innovative

agricultural techniques, encouraging

beneficiaries to diversify their livelihoods,

and ensuring safe and sufficient

water for local populations.

action against hunger

Poverty, deprivation,

and hunger are all

too common, but

ACF’s programs

help restore dignity,

health, and selfsufficiency.

Our 6,000+ staff

are seasoned

professionals and

technical experts in

water and sanitation,

food security, public

health, and nutrition.

Our emergency

interventions ensure

access to clean

water, a first line of

defense in mitigating

a natural disaster.


Kenya’s northern regions are regularly

threatened by both flooding

and drought in cycles of increasing

intensity and frequency that impede

the population’s ability to recover from

shocks and shorten periods of stability.

Action Against Hunger has carried out

humanitarian programs in Kenya since

2002, and continues to expand its

geographic coverage, the breadth of its

nutritional programs, and the development

of its water, sanitation, and

hygiene activities in response to these

ongoing crises. 2007 brought both a

mid-year drought, followed by a very

short and intense rainy season

that caused floods and irreversible crop

losses, as well as increasing instability

and violence in the wake of disputed

national elections. Working in its

established program in Mandera, and

opening a new program in Nairobi,

ACF organized emergency programs

to distribute food, water, and essential

non-food items such as soap and cooking

pots, while also providing nutritional

surveillance, support, and health

education for the displaced.



(From left): ACF-Mongolia, courtesy (From C. Doury/Agence left) ACF-Guatemala, VU; ACF-Malawi, courtesy courtesy B. Grignet; J.E. ACF-D.R.Congo, Atwood/Agence VU; courtesy ACF-Cambodia, Burger/Phanie; courtesy ACF-Cambodia, J. Lapegue courtesy J. Lapegue

ACF-Kenya, courtesy J. Lapegue





Edited by Samuel Hauenstein Swan & Bapu Vaitla, with a foreword by

Dr. Stephen Devereux; published by Pluto Press.

In 2007, Action Against Hunger’s research and advocacy department,

Hunger Watch, released The Justice of Eating, a report examining the

impact of various forces on malnutrition.

Combining thorough analysis with personal testimonies from struggling

families, this report assesses the underlying causes of hunger in

several African countries. A powerful indictment of local institutions,

national governments, international agencies, and the socioeconomic

forces complicit in the persistence of world hunger, the report argues

that an end to malnutrition is fully possible with sufficient political will.

Through case studies and personal narratives, The Justice of Eating

presents an insightful examination of the factors leading to nutritional

crises in contexts ranging from the violence and conflict of Darfur, to

the market instability of Niger, to the HIV/AIDS pandemic in Malawi

and Zambia, to the drought-prone coffee lands of Ethiopia. The report

concludes with a powerful and provocative argument that affirms a

universal right to food.




Photos of hungry children and successful

development projects may be

visually arresting, sharp illustrations of

Action Against Hunger’s humanitarian

work, but they do not capture the

painstaking research that goes into the

planning and design of each intervention.

This research is rooted in detailed

field data that tells us about a population’s

nutritional and health status

and guides decisions about where to

send our staff and what sort of help to


Unfortunately, when data is collected

in the turmoil of humanitarian crises

by different agencies that use varying

methodologies, the results can be

inconsistent at best and unreliable at

worst. And this, in turn, limits our

ability to evaluate the effectiveness of


To improve the quality of data collected

by the humanitarian aid community,

USAID and CIDA launched

the Standardized Monitoring and

Assessment of Relief and Transitions

(SMART) Initiative in 2002. Activities

of this interagency initiative

include standardizing surveys, building

databases, and providing technical

assistance. Action Against Hunger’s

involvement has helped to ensure that

available information on mortality,

nutritional status, and food security is

reliable, consistent, and informed by

our considerable field-based expertise.

The initiative has five components. The

first—and the one that Action Against

Hunger has been most involved

with—creates a standardized survey

manual and analytical software for use

in field surveys of population status.

Action Against Hunger field-tested

Version 1 of this tool in Chad, Mali,

Niger, and Nigeria, and our staff

helped to write the accompanying

survey manuals, both of which were released

for general use in March 2007.

Other components of SMART include

an international database on complex

emergencies, comprehensive training

and technical support for workers in

the field, and an operational research


Action Against Hunger is proud to

participate in this ambitious project

to improve effectiveness of the

entire humanitarian community.

Reliable, consistent data on the status

of populations in crisis allows us to

better understand the needs of each

population and respond with coherent,

appropriate strategies. While SMART

meetings may not grab headlines or

create compelling photo opportunities,

the project is nonetheless transforming

humanitarian action.

action against hunger

ACF works to

save the lives of


children while

ensuring access

to safe water

and sustainable

solutions to hunger.

ACF organizes and

trains community

water committees

to manage the

water systems

we rehabilitate

and install.

In addressing hunger,

clean water is as

essential as food, but

only by cultivating

local expertise

can we ensure its



(From left) ACF-Guatemala, courtesy B. Grignet; ACF-D.R.Congo, courtesy Burger/Phanie; ACF-Cambodia,

ACF-Ethiopia, courtesy P. Bussian

courtesy J. Lapegue

(From left): ACF-DR Congo, courtesy Burger/Phanie; ACF-Philippines, courtesy J. Lapegue; ACF-Cambodia, courtesy J. Lapegue







Increasing Funds to Expand Our Global Effectiveness

Over the past five years, the combined financial resources of the five ACF

International Networkheadquarters has nearly doubled from $71 million to

more than $142 million. This steady growth has allowed ACF to implement

strategies that prevent & treat acute malnutrition and help restore communities

to self-sufficiency, while still having the capacity to respond rapidly and effectively

to nutritional crises whenever and wherever they occur.

The chart below presents a five year history of the growth in the ACF International

Network’s aggregate, annual operating budget. While the revenues received

in any given year include dollars (in some cases both US and Canadian), euros,

and pounds, the totals have been converted into a single currency for the purposes

of comparison. The conversion rates used in this table reflect the historical

average rates of exchange for the year in question (e.g., in 2003 the USD/Euro

rate was 1.11, whereas in 2007 it was 1.36).


President Nelson Mandela

Action Against Hunger is in war-torn

countries that many fear to tread. They are

technical people…that forgo the comforts

of modern life to assist local populations

and refugees at the most fundamental level

in the most dangerous locales. They provide

nutrition, healthcare, sanitation, and

food sustainability. They train populations

to be self-sufficient. Although these dedicated

men and women want to eliminate

the need for their services, humanity is

not willing and forces them to witness the

most heinous actions.”

Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Action Against Hunger—the title speaks

for itself. This is a remarkable organization

with a staff of energetic, enthusiastic

and deeply committed people who are

determined to make a difference to the

lives of thousands of people. There are

millions who do not have access to clean

water, food, health services or education.

They are condemned to a grinding life of

poverty with no choices. Action Against

Hunger is changing this. Their training

programmes are improving the quality

of life and health and, above all, bringing

hope to thousands in underdeveloped

countries. I commend them for their

outstanding work and welcome the opportunity

to express my support.”

(Top): ACF-Guatemala, courtesy B. Grignet/Agence VU; (Bottom): ACF-Ethiopia, courtesy P. Bussian

Susan Sarandon

Action Against Hunger reaches the most

vulnerable and neglected populations

through programs in nutrition, water,

sanitation, food security, and basic health

care. What makes them unique is that not

only do they address emergency needs and

save lives but they also help people regain

their autonomy.”





2003 2004 2005 2006 2007



Maintaining A Primary Commitment To Direct Field Services

In 2007, as in previous years, more than 80% of all funds directly supported our

field programs in nutrition & health, water & sanitation, and food security. The

balance covered the general management and administration costs of the five

headquarter offices, along with expenses related to fundraising, press relations,

and public outreach.













(From left) ACF-Guatemala, courtesy B. Grignet; ACF-D.R.Congo, courtesy Burger/Phanie; ACF-Cambodia, courtesy J.

ACF-DR Congo, courtesy Burger/Phanie


247 West 37th Street, 10 th Floor

New York, NY 10018

Tel: +1 212.967.7800

Fax: +1 212.967.5480

More magazines by this user
Similar magazines