The three Rome-based United Nations organizations, FAO, WFP and IFAD, are working with a common vision and complementary mandates to end hunger and poverty. FAO provides technical expertise and policy guidance. WFP provides food aid in response to emergencies and contributes to economic and social development, through such programmes as Food for Work and School Feeding. IFAD provides loans and grants to help the rural poor overcome poverty and gain the means to achieve food security.

FAO, WFP and IFAD have developed strong collaboration in both operational work and policy development. At the country level, they are assisting smallholder farmers and other rural producers to increase productivity and incomes and to reduce their vulnerability. By addressing the structural causes of food insecurity and poverty, they are helping to create the conditions for more rapid and balanced development. The agencies support an approach that combines food assistance for preventing malnutrition with longer term investments in agricultural production. Through their action, they have provided immediate access to food and improved the livelihoods of populations in need.

In the context of emergencies, FAO and WFP carry out needs assessments and help develop a response on food security in coordination with other relief organizations. IFAD supports the efforts of affected peoples to rebuild normal lives, by assisting their transition to rehabilitation and development.

The agencies are also working together on policy issues to highlight the centrality of agricultural and rural development to achieving the MDGs. Their joint launch of the Millennium Development Project Report in Rome, in consultation with the Government of Italy, reflects their strong commitment. Symbolizing their close collaboration, FAO, WFP and IFAD presented their views jointly at the Financing for Development Conference in Monterrey and at subsequent discussions in the General Assembly. The three agencies are also working together to support the efforts of African countries within the framework of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD). The three organizations are collaborating within the framework of the International Alliance Against Hunger (IAAH). Established by the World Food Summit: Five Years Later, the Alliance advocates for greater political will and practical action to rapidly reduce the incidence of hunger and rural poverty. Core membership in the Alliance also includes the International Plant Genetic Resources Institute (IPGRI) and NGO networks. A UN System Network on Rural Development and Food Security—promoted by FAO, IFAD and WFP—supports the activities of National Thematic Groups within the Resident Coordinator system and enables information exchange on best practices.