FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura joins GFN Board of Directors

27 Oct 2021

FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura has joined the Board of Directors of The Global FoodBanking Network (GFN), an international non-profit organization that works towards a hunger-free future in more than 40 countries by sustaining, uniting and strengthening food banks.

The GFN supports locally-led food banks, the majority of which are based in resource-scarce communities. It provides expertise, resources, and connections that dramatically increase efficiency, assure safety, and catalyse scale to provide hunger relief today in order to build resilient communities for tomorrow.

Fatma Samoura was invited to become a member of GFN Board of Directors, a voluntary role, given her 21-year career in the humanitarian sector, in extremely challenging parts of the world, where she saw first-hand the importance of access to balanced and nutritious food and was responsible for establishing efficient and dependable supply chains to combat poverty, hunger and malnutrition.

As the World Food Programme Country Director for the Republic of Djibouti, she oversaw one of the largest food aid operations in one of the world’s most logistically complex regions. This post was followed by missions in Cameroon, Chad, Guinea, Niger, Madagascar and Nigeria, before joining FIFA in 2016 as the first ever African and woman to hold the role of FIFA Secretary General.

Fatma Samoura is well known for her commitment to supporting vulnerable communities affected by natural and man-made disasters to get access to essential food aid and to rebuild livelihoods. Her resilience, tenacity and strong commitment to humanitarian causes has led to her being invited to join the Board of Directors for the Global FoodBanking Network.

Speaking about the news GFN’s Chair and CEO of Kellogg and Sovereign Consulting, Jason Ramey said: “GFN’s Board of Directors is pleased to welcome FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura. At a time when one in three people worldwide faces food insecurity, her experience leading FIFA, her work with the World Food Program, and other high-level organisations will play a key role in guiding GFN as it supports community-driven solutions to alleviate hunger across the world.”

GFN President and CEO Lisa Moon added: “We couldn’t be more excited to have FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura on the Board of The Global FoodBanking Network. Madame Samoura brings deep professional experience and a firm commitment to gender equality and humanitarian work which will help guide our organisation as we meet short-term hunger needs and work to address the long-term causes of poverty and food insecurity.”

FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura stated: “Alleviating people’s suffering, combatting malnutrition and helping people rebuild their lives when confronted with natural or manmade disasters was at the core of my work with the World Food Programme. In light of the difficulties people are facing around the world as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and many other issues, I am truly happy to be part of a panel of individuals who will use their experience, expertise and skills to power responses and build resilience in the face of food insecurity. I look forward to working side by side and hand in hand with the Global FoodBanking Network to help the millions of people who count on the global food chain to feed them and to have better lives.”

About the Global FoodBanking Network: Founded in 2006 by Bancos de Alimentos de Mexico, Feeding America, Food Banks Canada, and Red Argentina de Bancos de Alimentos, the Global FoodBanking Network serves food banks in 44 countries, supporting partners with the tools to relieve hunger and prevent food waste more effectively in their communities. Food banks distribute meals to a network of community service organizations, more than 59,000 around the globe that provide food to people facing hunger.

GFN’s goal is to support frontline food banks as they tackle the immediate need to powering a community driven response that builds resilience for the future. GFN is focused on four priorities: 1. Scale where capacity is strong. 2. Empower leaders where relief is needed. 3. Protect vulnerable populations, especially children. 4. Accelerate resilience through nutritious food. To support and strengthen supply chains, GFN is helping food banks source from small-scale local food growers, ensure a reliable stock of key staples, and redirect fresh fruits and vegetables to those in need.

COVID-19 has increased food insecurity to its highest levels in decades. Locally led food banks around the world are effectively tackling hunger and strengthening communities through their leaderships, partnership capacity, and reach. The Global FoodBanking Network (GFN) represents a lynchpin in this crisis, helping frontline food banks respond to immediate needs while powering a community-driven response that builds resilience for the future.