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03 Feb 2017 description
report Mercy Corps

Evidence from Mercy Corps’ PRIME Program in the Somali region of Ethiopia

How investing in resilience helps fight drought

Pastoralists in eastern Ethiopia are no strangers to drought. That’s why resourcefulness and innovation are critical for maintaining their livestock. But in 2015, the El Niño weather cycle brought the worst drought in decades to this region — as one pastoralist from the Awbare district described it: “We’ve never seen anything like this drought.”

30 Nov 2016 description

Author: Sara Murray
Mercy Corps, November 2016


The Electronic Cash Transfer Learning Action Network (ELAN) launched this research to build an evidence base around connecting emergency electronic transfer (e-transfer) recipients with additional financial services. They also wanted to learn if, when, and how e-transfers can promote sustained uptake and use of digital financial services (DFS).

07 Apr 2016 description
report Mercy Corps

Hunger: It’s not a new problem for many countries in Africa.

While food is a basic necessity for human life, the reasons why millions of people go hungry are complex.

Crops are failing in **Ethiopia** due to dry weather conditions caused by El Nino, leading to the worst drought in a decade and triggering a hunger crisis that is affecting 10 million people.

13 Feb 2016 description
report Mercy Corps

Whether or not there’s food on the tables of millions of families in Ethiopia is dependent primarily on one thing: the weather.

Separated from the sea by Eritrea, Djibouti and Somalia, this landlocked country in the Horn of Africa is home to more than 96 million people, almost all of whom rely on rain-fed agriculture, including crops and livestock, for the food and income they need to survive.

24 Mar 2015 description
report Mercy Corps

Dima Halke’s livelihood is milk. As the only provider for her eight children, 49-year-old Dima sells the milk her cattle produce to buy food, medicine and supplies for her family. Her cows are her only asset — and her only source of income.

Like the rest of her pastoral community in Ethiopia, Dima’s survival is dependent solely on her livestock.

16 Oct 2013 description
report Mercy Corps

Ethiopia, October 15, 2013

A year ago, 6-month-old Hawa Mumin was a hungry, listless baby, one of many children in Ethiopia facing hunger from food shortages in the region.

An orphan, Hawa and her seven siblings are in the care of their aunt, Nima Hassan, who already has four children of her own. With limited resources and no access to traditional medical care in their remote village, Nima struggles to provide for her large family.

27 Feb 2013 description
report Mercy Corps

Jennifer Schmidt
Senior Development Officer

"Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much. —Helen Keller

Given the magnitude and complexity of the poverty challenges that our global community faces, Helen Keller’s words couldn’t ring more true.

27 Jul 2012 description
report Mercy Corps

Bija Gutoff
Senior Writer/Editor

You might hear it called a “slow onset” emergency because, unlike the sudden strike of an earthquake, drought builds gradually. But don’t bother telling that to the mothers whose children are hanging on by a thread; slow isn’t the word they would choose. Grueling, they might say. Nerve-wracking. Painful.

09 May 2012 description
report Mercy Corps

Liz Hummer
Online Content Manager

Emergency response program manager Kaja Wislinska speaks to community members who are repairing a pond too damaged to hold water. It is now a working water source for the 400 households in Ada Olaa village.

13 Apr 2012 description
report Mercy Corps

Erin Gray
Senior Media Communications Officer, European HQ

When drought hits and families are struggling to survive, the solutions don’t always have to be complicated or expensive. As I learnt from our team in Ethiopia last year, something as simple as a sack can mean the difference between hunger and happiness for a farming family.

04 Mar 2012 description
report Mercy Corps
Research Brief

Promoting resilience has gained attention in the wake of the recent drought in the Horn of Africa. In mid-2011, Mercy Corps received anecdotal evidence from local officials that drought-affected communities that had benefited from Mercy Corps-supported peace processes were better able to cope in the face of these harsh conditions than other pastoralist groups in southern Ethiopia. Mercy Corps undertook a study to better understand this unintended effect, and further examine the links between conflict and drought resilience.

30 Apr 2010 description

By Andy Catley and Alula Iyasu


This report describes a rapid, combined livelihoods and conflict analysis in Shinile Zone, Somali Region of Ethiopia, conducted in March and April 2010. An underlying question for the analysis was the extent to which aid actors should integrate peace-building and livelihoods programming as part of long-term development strategies for the Zone.

04 Mar 2010 description
report Mercy Corps

by Emma Proud

We've been in the car for a long time in the last couple of days. We're in Gashamo, a small town in the desert. A couple of days ago we drove for nine hours drive on bumpy sandy tracks from the Somali Region capital of Jijiga.

The drive was long and uncomfortable, captivating and bone shaking. We drove through areas of acacia woodland, the dry, prickly trees providing animals much-sought shelter.

08 Nov 2006 description
report Mercy Corps

Mercy Corps responded to Ethiopia's deadly flooding by helping those marooned in villages along the Omo River in the southwest corner of the country.

Floods in August left more than 630 people dead and nearly 200,000 homeless and took heavy tolls on agriculture and livestock, according to the International Herald Tribune.

The flooded region is near where Mercy Corps works to help communities resolve conflicts over tribal boundaries and natural resources.

27 Aug 2006 description
report Mercy Corps

Mercy Corps is responding to Ethiopia's deadly flooding by helping those marooned in villages along the Omo River in the southwest corner of the country, near its borders with Sudan and Kenya.

Flash floods in the East African nation have killed nearly 900 people and displaced about 48,000 in the last two weeks, according to the United Nations. Many of the displaced are now at risk from water-borne diseases, including acute diarrhea and cholera.

Ethiopian officials say the flooding could get worse.

19 Jan 2006 description
report Mercy Corps

Jilbo, Ethiopia - From their picturesque perch in the fertile Arba Gugu Mountains, Amina Ibro lives a hardscrabble life with her husband, Kalifa Mohammed, and their seven children. Like others in this village of mud-and-straw homes, the family raises crops and animals to eke out a living - if nature cooperates, that is.

"Our survival," says Ahmed Ossman, the chief of their small village, "depends on the rains."

Mercy Corps is helping families here smooth out the vagaries of Ethiopia's notoriously fickle climate.

04 Nov 2005 description
report Mercy Corps

Korke, Ethiopia - Not far from here, fertile highlands yield a bounty of staple Ethiopian foods: yams, hot peppers, onions, garlic, papaya and the popular cereal grain called tef. But on the rocky soils of this desert-like landscape, wildflowers, cacti and scraggly shrubs outnumber the stalks of maize and sorghum growing in small household plots.

24 Mar 2005 description
report Mercy Corps

People harbor hope and determination to succeed

by Bob Newell

Proud Ethiopia! Known to most in the West as the home of Emperor Haile Selassie, the so-called Lion of Judah.

Ethiopians are proud of their beautiful and varied country because they alone among African nations were never colonized. Just that fact gives Ethiopia something of a different feel than other places in Africa.

But Ethiopia also has a heritage of natural disasters, mostly in the form of drought, that has caused it to be the focus of international aid for decades.

18 Jun 2004 description
report Mercy Corps

by Roger O. Burks, Jr.