Drought Induced Emergency Multi Agency Rapid Assessment Dire Dawa Administration


Key Highlights Food, Agriculture and Livestock:

  • Following the complete failure of the previous belg crop production and over 65% reduction of the recent Meher crop production, about 173,924(90%) people of the 4 visited clusters need urgent food assistance. Out of these, about 130,285 people are those severely affected by the current drought. The food security situation is reportedly deteriorated in the 4-drought affected clusters in Dire Dawa rural areas.

  • During the assessment mission, good land preparation and cultivated land have been observed. Reportedly, 11965 hectares were prepared in the month of March 2022 and a total of 11,572 hectares were sown/planted with seeds. However, 40%-50% of planted area was lost due to rain shortage or drought and needs to be replanted. However, farmers need emergency seed support as they have exhausted all they have.

  • The current drought impact has compromised severely people’s coping capacity to the current drought. People in all the affected kebeles increasingly relied on ecologically unsustainable coping mechanisms like “firewood collection, charcoal production as income generating activities, and labor migration to neighboring Oromia region and Dire Dawa town for labor work.

  • Critical shortage of pasture and water has been reported from all the visited kebeles particularly Biyo Awale and Jeldesa Clusters with reports of livestock migration in areas where there is some residue of pasture like to Gungum Kebele. The coming season crop yield reduction is estimated to 54% because of shortage of rain fall (late onset, probable early cessation, erratic and low in amount rain fall, and long dry spell time).

  • Due to less priority attention, more advocacy measures on the drought impact for better preparedness and mitigative measures is expected particularly from Dire Dawa Administration (DDA) to the Federal Government.


  • Education sector is seriously affected by the drought. 40 % of the schools in all clusters are affected by drought. Most of the schools do not have access to water. No school is closed yet but rapidly increasing dropout and absenteeism because of the drought. Children, especially girls fetch water for their families from faraway water sources queuing for hours. Food scarcity in the home has an impact on student attendance and active participation in school. Children are engaging in negative coping mechanism such as exploitative child labor activities for meagre pay, early marriage, and child trafficking. School feeding and supply of water is required in 26 schools and 35 schools respectively to address the food insecurity and mitigate school dropout and absenteeism


  • Women and girls in drought affected areas travel of 3-9 kilometers round trip and wait in line for 2-4 hours to collect water from the kebele center exposing them to risk of sexual and gender-based assault as well as security issues such as wild animal attacks. Children specially girls are dropping out of school at increasing rate. According to key informant interview (KII), children who migrated with their families in search of pasture have restricted access to fundamental services such as school and medical care owing to the drought. Due to the food insecurity increasing number of malnutrition cases reported among children under 5 and Pregnant and Lactating Women(PLW). Coping mechanisms adopted include mothers reported skipping meals to prioritize their children, firewood collection, charcoal production, and daily labor. Lack of protection partners observed in all clusters.


  • Water is ranked as one of the top three critical needs of the community. Drought induced critical water shortage left over 195,000 from 38 kebeles of the rural population in need of water responses. Four trucks were requested but only one is responding to quarter of the affected ones with over 75% gap.

  • Many school children are dropping out of school to support in fetching water from long distance where available or to look after the house when their parents leave looking for water or food for the family in selling firewood or income from daily labor.

  • Many schools and health facilities don’t have access to water. Moreover, depletion of water sources and huge nonfunctionality rate of water schemes also contributed to lack of access to water. Currently, majority of the community depend on unprotected spring with very poor experience of using water treatment chemicals. Thus, there huge need for Water Treatment Chemicals (WTCs)and awareness raising on WASH.

Health and Nutrition

  • Reports of increase in malnutrition cases due to food insecurity at Household (HH) level as well as poor caring practices of under-five children. Poor screening coverage and lack of proper referral linkage between the Health Posts (HPs) and Health Centers(HCs) was raised as a major concern. Lack of water in many HPs and HCs compromised proper health service provision.

  • Reports of diarrheal cases increase in all the visited kebeles.


Over 1347HHs have migrated with their livestock and in need of ESNFI assistances particularly night clothes and ES.