Namibia: Food Insecurity Emergency appeal n° MDRNA009 Operations update n° 5

Appeal History:

This Emergency Appeal (Appeal n° MDRNA009) was launched on 30 September 2015 for CHF 950,205 to support the Namibia Red Cross Society (NRCS) to reach 3,200 households (11,500 individuals) through short and mediumterm humanitarian interventions. Programmes were designed to be implemented over a seven-month period and sought to address immediate food security and water requirements through emergency food assistance; long-term livelihoods support through community gardens development; sustainable water access through spring and borehole cleaning/creation; and hygiene promotion.

The second revision was done in April 2016 to cater for needed implementation time by the National Society. In July, the Government of Namibia declared drought an emergency. In an effort to complement government efforts, the National Society decided to extend the emergency Appeal to April 30, 2016. This will allow NRCS to continue lobbying for more resources to sustain the beneficiaries currently receiving support or more until end of lean season. At the time of writing, the Appeal remains significantly underfunded, having received only 15% coverage. As such, the operation has been able to only cater for 1,200 beneficiaries with emergency food assistance and 4,000 beneficiaries for the water point rehabilitation.

CHF 100,137 was initially allocated from the Federation’s Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) to support the National Society to begin immediate operations.

The IFRC, on behalf of NRCS, would like to thank the Canadian Red Cross, Japanese Red Cross Society, Red Cross of Monaco, and the Netherlands Red Cross for supporting the Appeal thus far. However, the Federation is appealing to all distinguished donors to support this EA in order to enable the NRCS to provide the much-needed support required by drought-affected communities. This is particularly important given the shifting realities on the ground and increasing needs of the affected population.

Summary:

Between October 2014 and February 2015, Namibia experienced highly erratic rainfall patterns that negatively impacted the planting and cultivation seasons. The recent 2016 assessment done by the office of the Prime Minister and Ministry of Agriculture estimated that 729,134 people were food insecure and 595,839 need immediate assistance due to the drought situation. Prolonged dry spells and extensive flooding characterized the planting season and resulted in delayed planting and destroyed crops. As a result, the 2014/15 crop production yields were 46% below average (NAMVAC 2015), which put parts of country at high risk of food insecurity. Additionally, the drought forced many families to adopt negative coping strategies in order to access water, such as collecting water from unprotected sources. This puts affected populations at risk of contracting waterborne diseases, which, if left unattended, may have negatively affected public health. The emergency also disproportionately affected the livelihoods and nutritional status of highly vulnerable individuals, including the elderly, orphaned and vulnerable children, and those living with HIV/TB. There is also a 55% – 60% chance of La Niña occurring toward the end of the year compounding the impact of El Niño. In the Southern Africa region, La Niña brings wetter than normal conditions, and often leads to extensive floods. The humanitarian impact is likely to be significant and long lasting leaving children and families’ coping mechanisms depleted.

Thus, the situation needs a concerted response from the Movement and, as such, prompted the NRCS to connect with the IFRC Southern Africa Cluster office to revise their Emergency Plan of Action (EPoA). The NS is currently revising its Emergency in consultations with its partners including the government on the new focus of the emergency appeal. The final revised document will be published mid-August 2016.