ACT Alliance Alert: Drought and Food insecurity in Somalia

by Elisabeth Gouel | | ACT Alliance - Switzerland
Friday, 29 August 2014 15:51 GMT

* Any views expressed in this article are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters Foundation.



Drought and Food insecurity in Somalia

Geneva, 29 August 2014

1.    Brief description of the emergency and impact

The humanitarian situation in Somalia remains dire with drought alerts being sounded. In February, the Food Security and Nutrition Analysis Unit-Somalia (FSNAU)  and the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET) , indicated that around 860,000 people would remain in Crisis (IPC Phase 3)  and higher phases through June 2014. There are reports that over 300,000 malnourished children in Somalia and a total nearing a million people are in need of life-saving help.

In the Southern and Central part of Somalia, the deteriorating food security is the result of intensified conflict, restricted trade, below average planting in some areas, and below average availability of agricultural labour opportunities related to below-average rainfall. The drought-affected regions include Gedo, Bakool, Galgadud, Hiran and Lower and Middle Shabelle.

There is little indication that Somali refugees from refugee camp, Dadaab, will return to Somalia in large numbers any time soon. However, an influx of these refugees into Dadaab is anticipated if the drought situation in Somalia deteriorates.

Worth noting is the added concern of the Polio outbreak in Somalia during recent months, as confirmed by the Global Polio Eradication Initiative in June 2014.

2.    Why is an ACT response needed?

Learning from the 2011 Horn response to famine a decisive action is needed early, rather than responding when the crisis has happened: early warnings require early action. The activities will focus on reducing drought risk and building community resilience.

3.    National and international response

The Somali government established a $500,000 drought relief fund and renewed an appeal for international help to combat growing shortages of food and water. Internationally, despite this serious situation, funding for Somalia in 2014 is critically low. A total of US$933 million is required to meet humanitarian needs for 2014, of which only 19 % has been funded.   

4.    ACT Alliance response

Through the ACT appeal SOM 121, people in Gedo, Garowe, Puntland Banadir and Dadaab refugee camp have received assistance.  ACT Somalia forum members LWF, NCA and DKH implemented the activities that reached beneficiaries in the following sectors:
In Dadaab: 1000: peace building activities, 120 leaders: community based psycho social support, 99: tents, 206: livelihood support.

In Gedo: 8,285: clean water supply, 3456:  general food distribution, 1656: targeted supplementary feeding and 6394: latrines.  

In Banadir: 615 families: food distribution and 135 families: non-food items.

5.    Planned activities

The response will focus on WASH, general food distribution, targeted supplementary feeding, non-food items, livelihoods, emergency education, emergency shelter, peace training and support for the return of IDPs and refugees. The activities will be implemented in Dadaab refugee camp, Gedo, Garowe, Puntland and Banadir.

6.    Constraints

Constraints are: access and insecurity, low funding, and availability of local partners.  


Any funding indication or pledge should be communicated to Jean-Daniel Birmele, Director of Finance (