FSIS Project Description

The FSIS project is conducted by the Applied Research Institute - Jerusalem (ARIJ) and funded by the Spanish Cooperation during the period 2009-2010. It aims at investigating food insecurity and vulnerability in Tubas, Bethlehem and Hebron governorates by providing quantitative and qualitative data about people and areas suffering from food insecurity and through developing a food security information system to assist in pilot decision-making process for future planning and implementation of developmental programs, awareness programs and relief interventions to ensure sustainable food security of most needy families in the targeted areas. The Strategic goal of this project is to improve the food security of around 400 poorest rural households in Tubas, Bethlehem and Hebron governorates, which are amongst those most targeted and affected governorates in the West Bank from sharp deterioration in the socio-economic conditions.

Several activities are being conducted for studying and surveying food security, health and nutrition status in Tubas, Bethlehem, and Hebron governorates at household and locality level. The project targeted 70 localities within the three targeted governorate, which were mostly found vulnerable and poor. The selection was based on the active participation of formulated committees (reaching up to 74 committees) at national -FSSC (Food Security Strategic Committee), governorate-GSCs (Governorate Stakeholders Committees), and locality-CCs (Community committees) levels, which highlighted the full coordination of local, national and international relevant stakeholders including MoSA, MoA, MoH, MEHE, PWA, PCBS, WFP, FAO, OXFAM, UNRWA, and others.  The formulated committees supported the selection process of the targeted communities and households, empower and direct the project activities and facilitate and sustain the impact of the project implemented activities.




Food insecurity and nutritional health (FINH) indicators were identified and developed into specialized questionnaire so as to feed the Food Security System that is developed through the project implementation. A baseline survey for FINH on household level was conducted for 3500 households in the three targeted governorates Tubas (8%), Bethlehem (25%), and Hebron (67%) for more than 70 communities. The households were selected based on several criteria but mainly their deteriorated socio-economic and food security conditions and after the coordination of community committees at locality level. The baseline survey main indicators including: locality type, gender, type of headed households, housing characteristics, socio-economic, education, and health status, land, water and agricultural assets, type of food consumed and frequency, food security, coping strategies, assistance types, frequency, sources and satisfaction. Those measured indicators clearly highlight the status and reasons behind most vulnerable and poor households.
The nutritional and health status was given special focus, where a blood test survey was conducted for 3000 persons selected out of the poorest 3500 households distributed over the three targeted governorates Tubas (22.8 %), Bethlehem (31.8 %), and Hebron (45.4 %). The selection of the localities and households for the blood test survey was based on a grade ranking system where the poorest were selected. The blood samples were analyzed by household, locality and governorate for the different age groups for different nutritional deficiency tests including CBC (hg), ferritin, B12, total protein, albumin, and folic acid. Special concern was given for pregnant women. The blood findings were integrated with baseline findings into the Food Security Information System




The project conducted awareness campaigns at governorate and locality level included the production of 7 leaflets, 52 articles, 100 TV and Radio flashes, 300 TV and Radio sessions, in addition to the conduction of 43 training workshops specialized for key and community women at locality level cover topics related to nutritional health and food insecurity- best food practices, food balance, nutritional health of different age groups and pregnant women, nutritional health and related diseases, coping strategies and food intake and others.
The project also worked on enhancing coordination among the stakeholders and decision makers, where 7 workshops were conducted at national and governorate levels to assist in capacity building of related bodies to adopt and apply the project recommendations in their plans, strategies and implementation programs. Such an approach institutionalized the cooperation among the different food security stakeholders and provided them the opportunity to discuss their plans, actions and to develop a common vision towards the food security sector. Additionally, their involvement offered a distinct opportunity to transfer the real needs of poor people to relevant decision makers and stakeholders.
The targeted poorest rural households improved their food production, their livelihood, generated more income, and developed their agro-environmental practices and capacities through the implementation of agro-developmental activities on household level including the distribution of 3 beehives/household (65 hhs)) and for 72 poultry head/household (63 hhs), rehabilitation of 130 rainwater harvesting cisterns, and establishment of 280 home gardens with drip irrigation networks.


Accordingly, the neediest rural households increased their agro-production capacities and succeeded in improving their food security and livelihood status in a sustainable manner.The project findings and recommendations are disseminated through the local media and the developed food security information systems which are available to people, related bodies, and institutions on the FSIS web-based database. more...