ECHO Factsheet – Sahel Food & Nutrition Crisis – February 2013

Key messages

• The most vulnerable households in the Sahel are facing a triple crisis: an ongoing food and nutrition crisis; an erosion of their resilience due to recurrent stresses and chronic food insecurity; and region-wide ramifications of the Mali conflict.

• Despite good harvests across the region in late 2012, food prices remain high, malnutrition among children has not decreased, and many families are more than ever indebted or impoverished after four consecutive food crises.

• The unprecedented humanitarian aid effort in 2012 enabled the treatment of over one million severely malnourished children in the Sahel. Priority must now be given to measures to strengthen the resilience of the poorest and to tackle the root causes of the food and nutrition crises.

• In 2013, the European Commission will continue to provide therapeutic nutrition care to children suffering from acute severe malnutrition and to provide safety nets in the form of cash and vouchers to allow the poorest to buy their own food on the local markets and thus, avoid them slipping back into crisis.

• The European Commission was instrumental in forging AGIR-Sahel, a global alliance to strengthen resilience in the Sahel, which has set itself a ‘Zero Hunger’ goal within the next 20 years.