Global Food Security Cluster Meeting of Partners 17/18 April 2013

Jun, 2013-06-05 12:03

The global Food Security Cluster (gFSC) meeting of partners was held from 17 to 18 April 2013 in Rome, Italy. The meeting brought together more than 60 participants and observers representing approximately 49 different partner agencies. The meeting was facilitated by a variety of partners who guided specific sessions based on their technical knowledge and area of expertise.

The overall purpose of the meeting was to review the work of the gFSC throughout 2013 and to identify the strategic direction for 2013-2015. The specific objectives of the two day meeting were to:

  • Assess progress and provide direction for the global Food Security Cluster's four Working Groups;
  • Improve understanding and consensus on the role of agencies, country food security clusters, gFSC partners and gFSC secretariat in relation to food security response analysis;
  • Increase engagement with partners for mainstreaming good practices on cross cutting issues and accountability to affected populations;
  • Promote both global and national multi-sectorial coordination of Cash and Voucher interventions in emergencies;
  • Agree on a methodology for addressing resilience within the food security cluster;
  • Understand the purpose, suggested process and next steps involved for the Food Security Cluster Evaluation.

These objectives were achieved with active and productive presentations and discussion leading to specific practical input to the gFSC moving forward.

The meeting was especially rich in technical content. Partners from food security national clusters contributed to providing greater insight into the more intricate areas of the humanitarian programme cycle. NGO partners outlined their response analysis tools and it was agreed that a greater effort would be made in developing joint analysis frameworks to avoid duplication of efforts. Specific case studies were drawn from Afghanistan, Pakistan and Somalia to highlight the unified approach undertaken in mainstreaming issues regarding implementing the Accountability to Affected Populations Framework as well as addressing protection, gender, age and disabilities in national food security clusters. Participants also stressed the importance of resilience building mechanisms in development and in the later stages of an emergency.  It was argued that a food security cluster has both a global and a national role to play in the coordination of resilience.

Overall, stakeholders gained a better appreciation regarding their roles and what they can expect from the cluster coordination systems. 

Global partners reiterated their commitment to the gFCS and agreed to encourage their country colleagues to participate and fully commit to country food security clusters.

Discussions and recommendations from this meeting will form the basis of the two year strategic direction of the global Food Security Cluster. 

It was agreed that the next meeting of partners of the global Food Security Cluster would be hosted by the Food and Agriculture Organization, Rome in October or early November with the face-to-face technical meetings the previous day.