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DRC Somalia scales up aid to thousands displaced by drought

DRC is ramping up assistance to thousands of families affected by the severe drought in Somalia. DRC’s field teams provide life-saving emergency support to the most in need and boosts community resilience to the ripple effects of the drought.

Posted on 31 May 2022

The humanitarian situation in Somalia has long been concerning due to decades of conflict and increasingly frequent climate shocks. Yet, four consecutive failed rainy seasons have stretched community resilience to its limits and parts of the country are on the brink of famine. Thousands of families have been pushed into displacement in the hope to find livelihoods, water and food.

Despite the severity of the drought, insufficient international attention and efforts have been dedicated to the crisis. DRC, along with the Somali population and diaspora, has been among the first to ring the alarm while meeting the most urgent needs of people of concern.

We are witnessing destitution on an unimaginable scale. I have met families who have lost everything; livestock have died and crops depleted with no source of income, there is an urgent need to assist these families before it is too late. While we appreciate the support of donors, more must be done to save the lives of millions.

/  Audrey Crawford, DRC Somalia Country Director

DRC is scaling up its response to meet the needs

DRC supports thousands of families through unconditional cash transfers that enable them to meet their basic needs, prevent negative coping mechanisms and support local businesses.

Where markets allow, cash transfers are DRC’s modality of choice. They allow families to make their own decision based on their specific needs, may they be food, drinking water, healthcare, cooking fuel or school fees. They also support local businesses and ultimately contribute to boosting community resilience.

Mariam is a 35-year-old mother of four who recently arrived in Istanbul IDP camp in Baidoa in order to seek assistance. Mariam was selected for the cash transfer programme where she will receive 60 USD each month for the next three months. “My only option was to beg for food in town, this will allow me to provide for my family,” she said.

Where necessary, DRC also provides frontline water, sanitation and hygiene emergency assistance through water trucking and distribution of critical household items. DRC’s emergency responses are completed within 5 to 10 days upon crisis/shock alert and thus ensuring the most vulnerable populations are provided with life-saving assistance in a timely and effective manner.

Beyond the emergency interventions, there is an urgent need for investments to build up strong adaptive capacities where they are required. Without them, we will witness loss of life, increasing displacement and greater suffering.

/  Audrey Crawford, DRC Somalia Country Director

An IDP Camp in Baidoa where newly arrived IDPs have settled therefore stretching the already limited services.

An IDP Camp in Baidoa where newly arrived IDPs have settled therefore stretching the already limited services.

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