Community-Based Approach to Food Distribution | Oxfam

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This is the ninth in a series of short books which are the result of a year-long process of reflection and learning by Oxfam's staff in East Africa. The series aims to fill a gap identified by those staff, that of practical guidance presented in a simple style for those working in the field on operational emergency projects. The purpose of this book is to give a general introduction to the principles and practicalities of registration and distribution. It describes the principles of effective distribution and the practical steps involved and then looks in more detail at the distribution of both food and non-food items.
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  ''Oxfam believes in the essential dignity of people andtheir capacity to overcome the problems and pressureswhich can crush and exploit them. These may be rootedin climate and geography, or in the complex areas of economics, politics, and social conditions. Registration m Oxfam believes that, if shared equitably, there aresufficient material resources in the world to enable all)eople to find fulfilment and to meet basic needs.  and Distribution m Oxfam is a partnership of people who share thesebeliefspeople who, regardless of race, sex, religionor politics, work together for the basic rights of food,shelter and reasonable conditions of life.Oxfam provides people with the opportunity of playing asmall part in a much larger struggle to eliminatepoverty and to help hurnanity develop in a spirit of love, co-operation and soliclarity.'' taken from 'Oxfann  An Interpretation'  Oxfam UK and Ireland 274 Banbury Road OxfordOX2 7DZ United Kingdom  PrefaceAcknowledgements This is the ninth in a series of short books which are the result of a year-long process of reflection and learning by Oxfam's staff in East Africa. The series aims to fill a gap identified by those staff, that of practical guidance present-ed in a simple style for those working in the field on operational emergency This book is based upon the field experience, and has been written with the activesupport, of the following Oxfam staff and partners in East Africa: George Abel, Charles Achi, James Achila, Judy Adoko, Simon Ameny, SusanAmot, Jimmy Andabaati, Jonathan Andrews, Florence Ariango, Juliana Auma, Ros Avery, Simeo Ayweka, Margaret Mania Azaa, Bernadette Bachubila, RashidBakhit, Jamie Balfour-Paul, Robert Bayo, Nandiga Bigambo, David Bikaba, Izzy Birch, John Bisoke, Morris Buga, Antony Burdon, Josephat Caroly, Charles Draecabo, Christopher Ekuwom, Mohamed Elmi, Ekwee Ethuro, Emmanuel Fimbo, Sister Fornasero, Cyn Gaigals, Lawrence Gichuru, William Gombe, Julle Gutru, Yohannes Hagos, Rahab Haguye, Francis Harembo, Dekha Ibrahim, Stephen Inyang, Onzima Ishmael, Tuku Ismael, Samuel Jonathan, Rosemary Kaduru, Emmanuel Kallonga, Bahrain Katsigazi, Alfred Kapoko, Rajah Kasunzu, Peter Kaswaka, Angela Katagyira, Modhakkiru Katakweba, Susan Kayetta, Suleiman Kidula, Saidi Kikoya, Amina Kisenge, Peter Kisopia, HamisiKisukari, Janet Koigi, Adam Leach, Anne Lema, Alois Lesuan, Hosea Lomilo, Simon Lomoe, Domah Loyce, Fred Lubowa, Basil Lucima, Vicky Luyima, Peter  Maraka, Mary Massawe, John Mayani, Shijja Mayunga, Grace Mbabazi, Atienc, Mboya, Festo Mchome, Martha Mtoizi, Peter Muhangi, Yusuf Muktar, John Munyes, Rose Mzava, Josphat Nanok, Haruna Ndema, Thomas Ng'ang'a, Francis Ngimukuny, Eliud Ngunjiri, David Nguru, Melania Njau, Emily Njeru, Eva Ntege, Martin Ocaga, Dokko Ochieng, Lynette Ocholla, Peter Ogolla, Ronald Okuonzi, Efijah Omollo, Abdilkadir Osman, Kevin Quinlan, Francis Saiga, Moroga Saison, Alfred Sakafu, Projectus Salvatory, Anna Samwel, Consolata Sana, Loserian Sangale, Kaddu Sebunya, Halima Shuria, M.P Shuzza, Stephen Tusiimire, Beverly Warjala, Roger Yates and Jack Young.  projects.Given the circumstances in which the books have developed, they reflectonly those areas of work with which staff in East Africa have been involved primarily support to refugees, to internally displaced people and to pas-toralists, all of whom have suffered the consequences of conflict or drought.However, the extent of this experience has been broad and imaginative, and therefore it is hoped that the lessons from it will have relevance beyond East Africa. In several places there are references to Oxfam's internal procedures and resources. Efforts have been made to limit these to a reasonable mini-mum, in the hope that fieldworkers from other organisations may also find the books useful. The books assume little prior knowledge or experience, since one of  their uses will be as a basis for the induction and training of staff. However they also include reading lists which suggest sources of more detailed tech-nical information and guidance. The complete series is as follows: Introduction: Policies and PrinciplesPreparing for Emergencies Book 1Book 2 Assessment and Planning Book 3Book 4 Monitoring, Evaluation and Phase OutOperational Project Management Systems: Logistics Book 5The following people are also thanked for their support, assistance and ideas: Alison Bannister, Ann Cullen, James Darcy, Ros David, Karen Brooks-Sax], Maurice Herson, Josephine Ippi, Paul Kendall, John Kinahan, Nick Leader, lan Leggett, Sarah Lockyer, John Magrath, Candida March, Jacinta Miller, KateMorrow, Paresh Moda, Koos Nefjees, Malcolm Ridout, Catherine Robinson,Chris Roche, Eve Rodgers, John Rowley, Paul Sherlock, Paul Smith-Lomas,  Nicholas Stockton, Caroline Sweetman, Nigel Taylor, Elena Tiffert Vaughan, Sarah Totterdell, Gwilym Wright and Helen Young. Operational Project Management Systems: Managing PeopleOperational Project Management Systems: Managing Finances Working with Displaced People Book 6Book 7Book 8 Registration and Distribution Book 9 Communications Work in Emergencies Book 10 There is also an accompanying disc with a selection of resource material and sample documentation commonly required in any emergency operation. 3 2  Food Distribution: 38Purpose of Food Distribution 38 Contents Methods of Food Distribution: 39 General Ration: 39 Ration Sizes 39 Introduction 7Issues to Consider 43Food for Work 46 Principles of Effective Distribution 8 Supplementary and Therapeutic Feeding Programmes 48Community Managed Distribution 9A Realistic Approach 10 Supplementary Feeding 48 Therapeutic Feeding 49 Destocking and Restocking 49 Key Stages in Distribution 12 Planning 1: 13 Non-Food Distribution: 51 Specification 51Community Representation 13 Distribution Committees 14 Quantity 51 Representation and Gender 16 Seeds and Tools Distribution 53Registration and Distribution Planning 17Planning with Other Organisations 20 TeamPlanning: 20 Logistics 20 Summary of Key Lessons 55 Appendix 56 Staffing: 21Further Reading 56Recruitment 21 Training 22 Material Available on Disc 56 Sharing Information 1 24 Registration: 25The Registration Format 26 Common Problems in Registration 28Registration of Displaced People 29 Registration Groundrules 29 Planning 2: 30 Compiling Figures and Calculating Rations 30Planning the Distribution Schedule 31 Hiring Trucks 32 Sharing Information 2 33 Distribution 34Monitoring 36 4 5  Introduction Distribution is the process of delivering relief supplies to those who need and are entitled to receive them. Registration in this context is the processof recording the names of these people, and it is therefore a central part of any distribution. The approach to distribution described in the following pages is based not on fixed procedures or systems but on a particular way of working which can be applied in different situations. At its heart is a set of simple principles which should guide all our actions. These include the standards of behaviour which beneficiaries are entitled to expect from any relief agency involved in distribution activities and from their own representatives:ã that the particular system of distribution should be built around the ben- eficiaries' lifestyle and culture. ã that there should be as much transparency as possible in the sharing of  information and in project activities. ã that the beneficiaries should be treated with dignity and respect, and should be assisted to play as active a part as possible in the running of the distribution. ã that women should be encouraged and supported to take a central role,given their traditional authority over household management and their  responsibility for family welfare. ã that each beneficiary has an individual right to receive the entitlement which they have been promised, and therefore that relief agencies must be accountable to them in supplying this.This approach to distribution can be used with different communities in dif- ferent circumstances. It has worked successfully with settled populations, with nomadic pastoralists, and with refugees and internally displaced peo- ple living in transit camps and longer-term settlements. It has been used todistribute both food and non-food items, either on one site (centralised) or  spread over a large area (decentralised). The purpose of this book is to give a general introduction to the princi- ples and practicalities of registration and distribution. It describes the prin- ciples of effective distribution and the practical steps involved and then looks in more detail at the distribution of both food and non-food items. 67
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