Menu ENN Search

Postscript to 'Selective feeding programmes for detainees in Rwanda'

We asked Ariana Curdy of ICRC to comment on this article:

This article raises most of the points I would want to make about the prison feeding programme in Rwanda. I will therefore mainly confine myself to providing a little more background and reiterate points that I think are most important.

Over the past two years the problems in the Communal Cachots (CCs) have increased. These prisons are now either full or overcrowded as populations have swelled. The centres were originally designed to be temporary detention places but are now more permanent places of imprisonment. There are currently 150 CCs with an approximate detainee population of 47,000. ICRC visit 91 of these centres, 12 of which are supported by CONCERN.

As indicated in the article, the authorities do not have the means to provide food for this population so that families of the detainees have been providing the meals. Besides the inherent problems of this type of support, e.g., some detainees have no family; some families live far away; families may be economically handicapped as males are the detainees; security problems limit ability of families to visit. Some additional problems have emerged lately. These include fragile food security in various areas due to returnee influxes, insufficient rains and poor harvests as well as food price inflation.

The ideal response to these problems would be to support vulnerable communities (including families of detainees). However, food distributions for security reasons are only feasible in limited/specific regions. Also, support for families of prisoners has proven to be a sensitive issue. Consequently, some organisations have left out families of detainees from general ration distribution lists while others have tried to get around the problem by targeting food for work activities at the wives of prisoners.

While support to families of detainees remains problematic there is no other solution but to support detainees directly. So far, CONCERN has been the only NGO to assist the CCs with food. The twelve cachots which have been selected with ICRC's help, are amongst the worst off of the 91. CONCERN distributes life-saving food to around 7,000 prisoners. Severely malnourished individuals are transferred to one of the prisons where therapeutic feeding programmes are operated by the ICRC.

Although there have been problems with food supply in the past which resulted in a reduction in the number of days feeding each week, CONCERN is now providing a full ration of 2,600 kcals per day for five days per week in their 'supplementary feeding programme'. Families make up the rest of the food on the four non-feeding days and add diversity to what would otherwise be a bland diet for the prisoners. In actual fact, ICRC classifies the CONCERN programme as a general food distribution. In my view, the only aspects of the programme which fit in with a 'selective feeding programme' categorisation are that prisoners are selected out of the whole community and only a small numbers of CCs are chosen. Otherwise the use of terms like 'selective' or 'supplementary' seem inappropriate to me as all detainees in a CC are taken care of while the size of meal is far greater than what is normally expected of a supplementary feeding programme.

View the article that this postscript relates to

More like this

FEX: Selective Feeding Programme for Detainees in Rwanda

Authors: Michael Byrne and Annalies Borrel - CONCERN Worldwide CONCERN is currently providing a supplementary wet-ration to over 7,500 detainees in twelve cachots (commune...

en-net: standards for kitchens/storage/hygiene for institutional feeding or wet feeding, do they exist?

Dear colleagues I am looking for a document. guidelines, standards that give information on norms of hygiene, food storage, aeration, surface etc related to wet feeding...

FEX: Emergency Supplementary Feeding

Supplementary Feeding Programmes (SFPs) are amongst the oldest and most common type of nutritional intervention in developing countries. The main aim of SFPs in both emergency...

FEX: Reflections on food and nutrition interventions in Huambo

By Lola Goselow This article is based on a field trip made by Lola Gostelow (SCF HQ emergency advisor) to the SCF programme in Huambo province, Angola in November 1999. The...

FEX: Frontline experiences of Community Infant and Young Child Feeding in Zimbabwe

By Wisdom G. Dube, Thokozile Ncube and Paul Musarurwa Wisdom G. Dube is the Gokwe North district nutritionist, Ministry of Health and Child Welfare (MOHCW),...

FEX: Supplementary Feeding Programme - Current Guidelines

Circumstances leading to the setting up of SFPs (from WFP guidelines) Blanket SFP Targeted SFP A generalised SFP for prevention purposes maybe implemented in the absence of a...

FEX: Selective Feeding in War-Ravaged Northern Uganda

Mothers receiving supplementary ration By: John Moore and Mara Berkley-Mathews John Martin Moore completed training as a Registered General Nurse at National University...

FEX: Malnutrition on Political Grounds

By Hadas Ziv Based in Israel, Hadas Ziv works for the organisation Physicians for Human Rights - Israel, and is Project Director for the Occupied Territories. The last three...

FEX: Co-ordinating a Humanitarian Response in Sudan

A man unloading a sack of 'Super Unimix' - a protein-rich nutritional supplement - supplied by UNICEF, from a World Food Programme plane. Paul Murphy, Regional Policy Adviser,...

FEX: The Cost of Selective Feeding (Special Supplement 2)

by Rose Caldwell & Alistair Hallam (Valid International) The aim of this paper is to present the cost per beneficiary of CTC and discuss aspects of these costs, underlying...

FEX: Issue 02 Editorial

Welcome to the second edition of Field Exchange . We are happy to report that the feedback following the first issue was very positive. It seems like the style, content and...

en-net: scale model for adults

During assessment in places of detention (so for ADULTS) I had always used mechanical scales (the everlasting SECA). I would like to test a digital scale, and I am looking for...

FEX: Older people, nutrition and emergencies in Ethiopia

By Vanessa Tilstone Vanessa Tilstone has worked for HelpAge International in Ethiopia for the last 3 years as the Country Programme Director and has worked previously in...

FEX: Somali Region Ethiopia

Summary of situation report Two consultants from UNICEF and WHO carried out an assessment of the emergency response in the Somali region of Ethiopia in August this year1. The...

FEX: Addressing the nutritional needs of older people in emergency situations: ideas for action

Summary of Review1 Help Age International (HAI) has produced a preliminary review of the nutritional needs of older people in emergency situations. This is part of an ongoing...

en-net: ICRC Regional Nutritionist - Nairobi

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), an independent humanitarian organization whose mandate is to provide protection and assistance for victims of armed...

FEX: CTC Approach (Special Supplement 2)

by Steve Collins (Valid International) 2.1 Main principles of CTC Community Therapeutic Care (CTC) is a community-based model for delivering care to malnourished people. CTC...

FEX: Integrating CTC in health care delivery systems in Malawi (Special Supplement 2)

By Kate Sadler & Tanya Khara (Valid International), Alem Abay (Concern Malawi) In February 2002, the Malawi government declared a national nutritional emergency and the UN...

FEX: The practical implications of using z-scores: Concern's experience in Angola

by Beth Matthews, Maureen Billiet (Concern field staff Angola) Annalies Borrell (Concern chief nutritionist Dublin). In children the three most commonly used anthropometric...

FEX: Introduction (Special Supplement 2)

Glossary ACF Action Contre la Faim CHA Community Health Assistant CHAM Christian Health Association of Malawi CNW Community Nutrition Worker CTC Community Therapeutic...

Close

Reference this page

Ariana Curdy (). Postscript to 'Selective feeding programmes for detainees in Rwanda'. Field Exchange 2, August 1997. p4. www.ennonline.net/fex/2/postscript

(ENN_3247)

Close

Download to a citation manager

The below files can be imported into your preferred reference management tool, most tools will allow you to manually import the RIS file. Endnote may required a specific filter file to be used.