Somalia: Humanitarian needs growing and increasingly severe
|Post date||Thursday, 30 November, 2017 - 11:57|
In the second half of 2017, the food security condition of many Somalis improved in many locations supported by large-scale humanitarian efforts and deteriorated elsewhere. We must sustain these fragile gains and expand assistance to emerging hotspots in northwest and central Somalia, and many agropastoral areas of the south. Around 6.2 million people are in need (IPC2-4), with 3.1 million in acute humanitarian crisis (IPC3-4). Somalis in IPC Phase 4 “Emergency” – which precedes Famine on the IPC scale – have increased ten-fold to 866,000 since the start of 2017. Despite large-scale assistance, the projected number of children who are or will be acutely malnourished has increased since the beginning of the year to 1.2 million. This includes 232,000 Somali children who have or will suffer life-threatening severe acute malnutrition (SAM) in 2018. Internal displacement has increased to 2.1 million people as a consequence of drought and conflict. The outlook for 2018 is also grim, with La Nina increasing the likelihood of poor rains during Gu 2018 (April-June) – jeopardizing food production and rural livelihoods for a fifth consecutive season.
We have averted famine thus far, but without sustained, scaled response, we risk seeing a dramatic deterioration in food security. Food Security Cluster members will continue to respond primarily through through the provision of cash and in-kind support to ensure access to food and income for the most vulnerable. At the same time, where conditions permit, members will promote own food production through the provision of seasonally appropriate livelihood support. Even during times of drought, farmers and pastoralists can sustain their own food needs if provided timely and appropriate support. Networks of Community Animal Health Workers are providing timely treatment and vaccination services, helping to mitigate the impact of the drought. Resource partners and members working more closely than ever to enhance advocacy and sustain the momentum built over over 2017 to keep Somalia famine free.
Picture credit: FAO Somalia. Saving livestock, saving lives