We are reopening this project as the severe drought is continuing to cause devastation and famine across eastern Africa. People, especially women and children, continue to die. Crop failures, deterioration of water sources, and loss of livestock have left more than half the population in need of humanitarian assistance. Millions of people are currently facing severe shortages of food, and devastating effects on their health and livelihoods.
Two consecutive seasons of reduced rainfall have led to severe water shortages in East Africa. The results are widespread and devastating. Failures of crops are leading to severe food shortages and surges in prices, with around 363,000 children acutely malnourished. Death of livestock is destroying the livelihoods of large parts of the rural population. The poorest are forced to use unsafe water sources, leading to increasing incidences of life-threatening waterborne diseases like cholera.
We will support local health workers in the self-declared republic of Somaliland and across the border in Kenya to meet the urgent health and nutrition needs of the most at risk, focusing on children under 5, pregnant women and new mothers. Essential medical and nutritional supplies will be provided, and outreach visits made to rural areas to treat malnutrition and disease, and provide services such as growth monitoring and immunisations.
Local people will be supported to resist disease and worsening malnutrition through awareness raising activities such as community discussions and radio messages to encourage safe behaviours, including practicing good hygiene and managing child illnesses. We will also work to increase uptake of services and build increasing links between facilities and rural communities, in a region where most are reluctant to seek care. Giving this support now will help strengthen future health prospects.