Oxfam Responds to East African Famine Threatening 20 Million People

Oxfam Responds to East African Famine Threatening 20 Million People

Below is a summary of Oxfam’s work addressing the current famine crisis in the four East African countries where it threatening the lives of 20 million people; links to more in-depth articles follow.

Oxfam/Lauren Hartnett

Throughout South Sudan, Oxfam is providing water and sanitation to help people avoid diseases like cholera and diarrhea, which can lead to malnutrition and prove fatal. Oxfam and others are working to preposition supplies ahead of the rainy season which will make it even more difficult for vulnerable people to access aid. In the past year alone, Oxfam’s helped over 600,000 people across the country and assisted almost 40,000 of the most vulnerable in Panyijar County, Unity State, to where many people have fled from famine-hit areas. We are also providing travel vouchers for people to take canoes to reach food distributions – thereby ensuring that the most vulnerable people who are sheltering from the conflict on remote islands can access aid. Some people travel up to eight hours each way via canoe through the swamps. Oxfam, working with local partner organizations, provides emergency food distributions and works with vulnerable people to produce their own food and other income, to claim their rights, to flee violence, to find safety and to access to aid.

In northeast Nigeria Oxfam has helped about 300,000 people affected by the crisis in Adamawa, Borno and Yobe states since May 2014. Oxfam’s intention is to help up to 500,000 people in 2017. Oxfam provides people with emergency food support and cash and vouchers so they can buy food from local markets, clean water and better sanitation, including constructing showers and toilets. We are distributing food and cooking equipment, and kits to help people avoid diseases and keep themselves clean.

In four governorates of Yemen, three of which are at risk of famine, Oxfam is supporting over 205,000 people with cash to enable families to buy food in the local market or livestock so they get a possible source of income. 35,000 individuals have taken part in our cash for work programs. Across the country, Oxfam has been reaching more than a million people since July 2015 with assistance that also includes clean water, hygiene kits and other essential aid.

In Somalia, Oxfam is launching a humanitarian response in Somaliland, where it already has established development programs. The immediate plan is to reach a minimum of 10,000 people with clean water, sanitation and cash assistance for food.  As the drought impact worsens in the next few months, we hope to be able to secure enough funding to significantly expand our response across the region and ensure we are able to provide immediate life-saving support.

Read more at these links:

In South Sudan and Yemen, families struggle to survive as hunger haunts them
March 27

Millions in Yemen knowingly pushed to the brink of famine
March 23, 2017

One month after South Sudan famine announced, it’s a race against the rains to save lives
March 20, 2017

Yemen hunger increase: action needed to get food ‘to port and through to plate’
March 15, 2017

More funding needed to prevent spread of famine in South Sudan
March 14, 2017

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Oxfam International is a recommended charity of The Life You Can Save. Oxfam is a confederation of 17 organizations working to create sustainable and effective solutions to extreme poverty, global hunger, and injustice.

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The views expressed in blog posts are those of the author, and not necessarily those of Peter Singer or The Life You Can Save.