Women and Urban Food Insecurity in Southern Africa
"In Southern Africa, poverty, food insecurity and malnutrition are usually viewed as rural problems, with little focus on cities. The locus of poverty, however, is gradually shifting from rural to urban areas and is manifested in growing food insecurity. Southern Africa is urbanizing rapidly and more than half of the region’s population is expected to live in cities and towns by 2025. Without appropriate policy intervention, urban food insecurity will likely rise. The poorest segments of the rural and urban population in Southern Africa are women and children. In the cities, poverty disproportionately affects female-headed households and makes them especially vulnerable to food insecurity. A better understanding of how female-headed households cope with urban food insecurity is needed to inform appropriate policy responses. Research should focus on how to integrate women into the urban economy so that they can generate an income that reflects the cost of living in an urban environment."