The European Commission has announced it will deploy €50m in humanitarian aid funding to drought-hit regions in the Horn of Africa.
€20m will be allocated to Ethiopia, €3m to Kenya, €25m to Somalia and €2m to Uganda; bringing the EU’s total Horn of Africa aid contributions to €366.5m since 2018. The region has been badly affected by drought since 2016, which has had a devastating impact on the subsistence farming and livestock cultivation on which many of its residents rely; exacerbated by rising food prices, which have left low income families unable to access basic foodstuffs. Nearly 13 million people are now in immediate need of emergency food aid, with acute malnourishment affecting more than four million children and around three million women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.
The Horn of Africa aid package will be allocated to a range of assistance measures, including:
- Improving access to clean drinking water for both human and livestock populations;
- Food and nutrition assistance, as well as support in addressing residents’ immediate nutritional needs;
- Specific, direct treatment for pregnant and breastfeeding women, infants and young children suffering from severe acute malnutrition;
- Protecting the livelihoods of communities, the majority of which rely primarily on pastoral and agricultural activity; and
- Supporting and assisting humanitarian agencies throughout the Horn of Africa in boosting their aid efforts in the areas which have been hardest hit by drought.
Christos Stylianides, the EU’s Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management, said: “The EU is stepping up its support for the people affected by a prolonged drought in the Horn of Africa. During my several visits to countries in the region, I have seen first hand how much climate extremes are affecting this part of Africa. Our funding will help extend humanitarian assistance in the affected areas, helping communities ward off the risk of famine.”