The Next Crisis Wave of COVID-19: Impacts on household food security and nutrition and preparedness considerations

Featuring: Mija-tesse Ververs, Johns Hopkins Center for Humanitarian Health; Sarah O’Flynn, Save the Children; Allison Oman Lawi, World Food Programme; Alexandra Rutishauser-Perera, Action Against Hunger UK; Kate Golden, Concern Worldwide

“The Next Crisis Wave of COVID-19: Impacts on household food security and nutrition and preparedness considerations” was the ninth webinar in the COVID-19 and Humanitarian Settings weekly series. It was held on Wednesday, May 27, 2020, 0800-0900 EDT/1200-1300 GMT).

As the world focuses on responding to the first wave of COVID-19, we must recognize the next crisis wave: the impacts of the pandemic on household food security and nutrition. As disruptions to markets, food systems, and health services are felt critically by households around the world, we invite experts and field practitioners to discuss projections related to food and nutrition security as well as ways we are adapting to both measure and respond to these shocks.


  • Mija-tesse Ververs, Center for Humanitarian Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health; Emergency Response and Recovery Branch, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Since 2016, Mija Ververs has been working at the Center for Humanitarian Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and is a visiting health scientist with the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta. Her field of expertise lies in nutrition, public health, food security, and infectious diseases. Mija has over 35 years of experience and has worked with more than 15 organizations varying from international NGOs, IFRC, ICRC, various UN agencies, and government and academic institutions. Mija has worked in over 25 countries affected by conflict or natural disasters.
  • Sarah O’Flynn, Director of Emergency Nutrition, Save the Children: Sarah has spent the last 12 years focusing on the nutritional health of children, pregnant and breastfeeding women in emergencies with a focus on response programming, capacity strengthening, and operations research. Sarah has supported emergency responses in Asia, the Middle East, Europe, Africa and North America after managing field programs in Sudan and South Sudan.

Expert Speakers

  • Allison Oman Lawi, Deputy Divisional Director for Nutritional Operations, Analysis, and Integration, World Food Programme: Allison has worked for WFP for the last six years as the Senior Regional Nutrition Advisor for East, Horn and Central Africa, based in Nairobi. Previous WFP work includes evaluating projects in Guinea Bissau, Kenya, Eritrea and Darfur. She began her nutrition work in 1996 with MSF in Uganda and her UN career one year later with UNHCR in Ethiopia. Allison has worked for UNHCR at different points in her career, with her last position as the Nutrition and Food Security Advisor for the East and Horn of Africa from 2008-2014.
  • Alexandra Rutishauser-Perera, Head of Nutrition, Action Against Hunger UK: Alexandra has been working in the humanitarian field for the past 14 years, focusing on public health nutrition in diverse settings (emergency and development) in more than 20 countries across Africa and Asia. She has worked with various NGOs, such as MSF, IMC, and Save the Children, before joining Action Against Hunger UK. Alexandra manages a team of nutrition assessment specialists, is a member of the strategic advisory group of the Global Nutrition Cluster, and co-chairs the Global Technical Assistance Mechanism on Nutrition Information Systems.
  • Kate Golden, Senior Nutrition Advisor, Concern Worldwide: Kate has been working in nutrition programming and response in the developing world for roughly 15 years. She has worked in Ethiopia, South Sudan, Sudan, and Lebanon, and since 2006 she has supported nutrition programming, strategy development, and emergency response to about 15 countries across Africa and Asia as a global nutrition advisor. She is currently based in Beirut, Lebanon.
United States Agency for International Development Johns Hopkins Center for Humanitarian Health, Save the Children, Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs, UK Med, EcoHealth Alliance, Mercy Malaysia

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