Integral Launches new Alert for the Greater Horn of Africa Food Crisis

Photo © Food for the Hungry, 2022
A pupil at Uran Primary School in Sololo, Marsabit, drinks water during break time. Through their Drought Emergency Project, FH Kenya installed a water tank, rain water harvesting gutters and tank shelter at Uran Primary School.

Integral has launched a Disaster Response for the worsening food crisis in the greater Horn of Africa. Currently 12 Integral Members are responding to this severe food and malnutrition crisis[1] to cover work in Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia and Uganda.   

The March-May 2022 rainy season was the driest on record in the last 70 years, meaning that this drought has now surpassed the horrific droughts in 2010-2011 and 2016-2017 in both duration and severity. It is estimated that across the Horn of Africa, at least 36.1m people will be affected by severe drought in October 2022, including 24.1m in Ethiopia, 7.8m in Somalia and 4.2m in Kenya. High levels of food insecurity continue across East Africa, and famine is projected in parts of Somalia in the coming weeks [Source here].

Anna Coffin, Medair’s Head of Country Programmes for Afghanistan & Somalia, says, “The situation in the Horn of Africa is incredibly serious, with deaths from malnutrition a growing reality. Far from the public’s television news screens, we are entering an unprecedented fifth consecutive season of failed rains. Medair has been responding in Somalia through a massive scale-up of mobile health and nutrition services and trucking water to communities who have none available. Since the drought is not constrained by international borders, we have also started a response in Northern Kenya. Urgent help is needed for many families who are struggling to survive in the face of this crisis.”

Integral Members have been sharing information on the worsening crisis and their response plans for several months. Many are working in more than one of the countries covered by this response, with some also working in neighbouring states to address growing food and nutrition needs there.  By coming together as Integral, Members hope to increase coordination and secure more much-needed support for this crisis. 

Jan Eyre, Integral’s Head of Disaster Management and Programmes says, “This is not a new crisis, and our Members have been responding to the needs for some time.  Much collaboration is already happening between Members and with our network of Partners.  This crisis is being exacerbated by rising food, fuel and fertiliser prices globally driven by the conflict in Ukraine and it remains critically underfunded.  By launching this new alert, our hope is that together Members will be able to mobilise more support for the most vulnerable communities.”

In the initial stages of an Integral response, calls are held as frequently as necessary, so that Members can share information in the critical phase when needs are acute. The Integral online platform enables Members to share photos and stories, response plans and funding needs.

[1] Food for the Hungry (USA & Canada), International Health Partners (UK), Integra (Slovakia), Medair (Switzerland), Medical Teams Int (USA), Tearfund Australia, Tearfund (Belgium), Tearfund Netherlands, Tearfund (UK), World Concern (USA), World Relief (USA), ZOA (Netherlands)