Food Crisis Hits Horn of Africa



The worst drought in 60 years has left more than 12.5 million people in Somalia, Ethiopia and Kenya at risk of severe food and water shortages. Our field teams have reported that the number of malnourished children is rising. Mercy Corps experts with deep experience in humanitarian relief have said this is one of the worst situations they have seen. Your donation will help us ramp up our work in hard-hit Ethiopia and Somalia, and emergency operations in Kenya and help people survive.

What is the issue, problem, or challenge?

The region's drought crisis has been growing steadily for months. Many inhabitants are traditional herders whose livestock are dying in massive numbers. Families have begun walking hundreds of miles in search of water, losing loved ones along the way from malnutrition and disease. Aid camps are strained to the breaking point. Rains that have come are not enough. This crisis could prove worse than in Ethiopia in 1984 which ultimately killed one million and prompted LiveAid benefit concert.

How will this project solve this problem?

Mercy Corps is focusing efforts on the most vulnerable in villages and towns. Delivering resources to people where they are today will make them less likely to move to overcrowded camps tomorrow. Mercy Corps will ramp up its existing programs and provide vouchers for food and water, water purification, emergency nutrition, and cash for work. Food, and in some cases even water, is available in much of the region, but prices have soared and people lack income to pay for these resources.

Potential Long Term Impact

When famine occurs, Mercy Corps quickly delivers immediate assistance to hungry families through food distributions. At the same time, we always focus on helping people feed themselves over the long term. That's why our economic and agricultural projects are geared toward self-sufficiency: we're teaching people to plant higher-yield crops and earn the highest possible prices for their harvests. Growing more food and making a better living are the best ways to ensure families have enough to eat.

Funding Information

Total Funding Received to Date: £34,512

Funding Information

This project is now in implementation and no longer available for funding. Received funds will be used to accomplish concrete objectives as indicated in the project's "Activities" section. Updates will be posted under the "Project Report" tab as they become available.

Donors' contributions and pledges to this project totaled £34,512 .  The original project funding goal was £46,424.

Additional Documentation

This project has provided additional documentation in a PDF file (projdoc.pdf).


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Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.

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Mercy Corps

Portland, OR, United States

Project Leader

Carlene Deits

Portland, OR United States

Where is this project located?