Years of conflict, drought and crisis have left many people in Somalia in precarious conditions. In the past two decades, more than a million people - approximately one in ten Somalis - have been forced to flee the fierce fighting and cycles of drought that have plagued their country. Approximately 80 per cent of them are women and children.
Two consecutive seasons of low rainfall, continued fighting and reduced humanitarian access have further compounded the humanitarian situation. Today, over 3 million people are estimated to be in urgent need of humanitarian assistance as they struggle to survive with limited access to health facilities, food and water.
Children are bearing the brunt of the situation: one in seven children under the age of five - or 218,000 children - are suffering from life-threatening malnutrition. Three in four acutely malnourished children are in southern and central Somalia.
What we are doing
We have worked in Somalia for more than 20 years, and were one of the only organisations working in the hard-hit Bakool and Benadir regions, the epicentre of the 2011 food crisis and humanitarian catastrophe. Last year, our teams provided assistance in and around Mogadishu, El Barde, Hudur and Eyl, helping 181,345 people. We are also running programmes in refugee camps along the Ethiopian and Kenyan borders, where thousands of Somalis have relocated.
Our work in Somalia includes:
- Diagnosing and treating severely malnourished children
- Providing basic health services to children, pregnant and lactating women
- Providing context-specific food security and livelihoods programmes to strengthen the resilience of people to cope with future crises and help them access food throughout the year
- Providing access to water and sanitation by constructing public latrines and rehabilitating wells
- Promoting good hygiene practices