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: 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: 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...

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: 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: 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: Integrated PMTCT Services in a Rural Setting in Malawi

By Gertrude Kara, WFP and Mary Corbett, ENN Gertrude Kara is the Programme Officer responsible for HIV/AIDS programmes in WFP Malawi. She has wide experience in the area of...

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...

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...

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: 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: Nutrition intervention in crisis some worrying practices

by Alain Mourey Alain Mourey is ICRC's HQ nutritionist. He joined ICRC after graduating from the MSc course in Human Nutrition at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical...

FEX: Rhino Camp, Uganda: A Refugee Perspective

By Grace Abu Late last year, nutritionist Grace Abu, visited the Rhino Refugee camp in Northern Uganda for a two day period to see family and friends. This article describes...

FEX: Enhanced Outreach Strategy/ Targeted Supplementary Feeding for Child Survival in Ethiopia (EOS/ TSF)

By Selamawit Negash, Nutrition Specialist, UNICEF Ethiopia Selamawit Negash (MPH) has been working as a Nutrition Specialist with UNICEF Ethiopia since April 2007. From...

FEX: Understanding the food crisis in Zimbabwe

By Fiona Watson Fiona has recently been in southern Africa with the Overseas Development Institute (ODI), looking at the role of needs assessments during the current...

FEX: Food Kitchens in Mogadishu

Children in Hamar weyne This article was prepared by the ENN from information and resources available online. We gratefully acknowledge SAACID for allowing us to share their...

FEX: Integration of CTC with strategies to address HIV/AIDS (Special Supplement 2)

By Paluku Bahwere, Saul Guerrero, Kate Sadler & Steve Collins (Valid International) The district health officer of Dowa, Malawi, briefs clinic and community workers about the...

FEX: Revised MSF Nutrition Guidelines II

By Saskia van der Kam, MSF Holland, Senior Nutritionist This is the second in a series of pieces published in Field Exchange* which summarises key sections of the newly...

Close

Reference this page

Ariana Curdy (1997). 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.