Ethiopia + 1 more

Monthly Food Security Report for Somalia Mar 2003

Originally published


**Hargeisa Urban Baseline Assessment : An urban baseline assessment of Hargeisa town has taken place during February/March. FSAU Field Monitors based in the region provided technical assistance to the assessment with support from The Food Economy Group and FEWS NET. The urban assessment will provide an improved understanding of how people live in these urban areas, in particular how their food and income options balance with expenditure requirements and it will enable the establishment of an efficient monitoring system to track urban food security. For more information please contact :

** FSAU Baseline Profiles : The FSAU is undertaking field work in order to complete 13 updated baseline profiles. The FSAU Assistant Food Security Analyst is currently working with Field Monitors in Galgadud on The Hawd (Central Somalia) - Pastoral Food Economy Group profile. For more information contact : lesley.

** FSAU Interim Database : FSAU has finalized its interim database which stores key data on population figures, Food Economy Zones, Indicator trend data and Administration. For more information please contact

**Nutrition and Food Security Workshop. Mandera, Kenya. 3 - 5 February, 2003. A three day workshop on nutrition and food security, organized by FAO, and supported by FSAU, was held in Mandera (Kenya) for Gedo region for those agencies (10 INGO's and 20 LNGO's) wishing to carry out interventions in the region. FSAU facilitated the first two days by providing relevant information on food security and nutrition concepts. One of the main conclusions was that partners, in collaboration with FAO, would work on practical interventions to address malnutrition in Gedo region. The FSAU, Assistant Food Security Analyst who attended the above workshop has also contributed to the latest update on the current food security situation in northen Gedo. See page Five.


Deyr 2002/03 cereal production best ever recorded in post-war era (1995-2001): Very good rainfall with high intensity and frequency fell throughout Southern Somalia during this Deyr season. As a result of plentiful rainfall (which greatly improved condition of livestock and subsequently crops) farmers in the sorghum belt switched from ratoon planting to new sorghum plantings which also greatly enhanced this final production figure. For a full report on the Deyr 2002/03 harvest assessment and its implications on food security see page 2 and 3. However, pockets of food insecurity do still remain in Southern Somalia (See vulnerability map on page 4) and these include pastoralists and agro -- pastoralists in Middle and Lower Juba largely as a result of insecurity which has caused disruption to migratory patterns and looting of assets. Similar problems have also been observed in Baidoa and Burhakaba towns. In North Gedo, there was low cereal production and the region remains in crisis despite the fact that livestock have benefited from the good Deyr season.

Humanitarian Response Group (HRG) Meeting called to decide and agree on interventions to relieve crisis in Awdal : An estimated 5,000-7,000 households of Issa cattle/sheep pastoralists have migrated from Shinile Region of Ethiopia into the sub-coastal districts of Awdal Region of "Somaliland". This Awdal area has had below average rains over the last three years, although the hais rains in December/January enabled pasture and browse to recover to some extent. The most recent influx of Issa pastoralists report a 50% cattle mortality rate. Their remaining cattle are currently in very poor condition and yielding no milk although their small stock are in better shape and are giving milk. Browse for camels and goats (ie local Gadabursi livestock) is reported to be good and will last until the Gu rains if they are timely. The major concern is that pasture for the Issa cattle keepers will be depleted within the next 2-3 weeks and will not sustain herds until the next rains due in April/May. The FSAU participated in an inter-agency nutrition survey in the area and found 36% acute malnutrition (MUAC <12.5 cm) in the transitory settlements at the end of 2002. UNICEF's screening of children for supplementary feeding, found approximately 30% acute malnutrition using weight for height out of a total of over 2,000 children. The FSAU also found that two strategically situated boreholes are currently not working, adding stress on livestock who have to trek long distances daily (especially small stock and cattle), and increasing localised pressure on pasture and browse. For a summary of the FSAU's latest assessment on this area and suggested responses presented and discussed at the HRG (4 March 2003) see page 6.

Food Aid Distribution

**CARE has pre-positioned 2500 Mt of food in Mandera and El Waq for Gedo. CARE is also planning to do a registration of beneficiaries in Gedo region. (See also FSAU article on North Gedo food security update on page 5)

**In February, no food was distributed by CARE in Gedo. El Bon has had good harvest so CARE is planning to carry out food for work, building roads, in the area. **In February, WFP distributed 51Mt in Bay region, 204 Mt in Bakol, 25 Mt in Hiran,(Belet Weyne) and 126 Mt in Lower Shabelle (Merka district) and 18 Mt in Mogadishu. In the Northwest, 41 Mt were distributed in the Hargesia district of Awdal region, 125 Mt in Bari region and 9 Mt in Nugal.

For further information on CARE's food aid operations, please contact : For further information about WFP's activities, please contact :

Highlights from the FSAU 'Nutrition Update'

- In Jeriban, UNICEF, MOSA and the FSAU conducted a nutrition survey in mid December 2002. Preliminary findings suggest a global acute malnutrition rate of 9.8% (CI: 8.0% - 12.0%) and severe acute malnutrition of 1.7% (CI: 1.0% - 2.8%).

- At the same time, UNICEF, MOSA and FSAU carried out a separate nutrition survey in Galgodob Town using an exhaustive methodology. Results indicate a global acute malnutrition rate of 12.5% and a severe acute malnutrition rate of 3.7%.

- In response to demand from partners, the FSAU conducted a training workshop in Hargeisa focussing on the collection, analysis and use of nutrition and food security information. Partners from a number of sectors attended. There was high demand for further training and assistance with the interpretation of nutrition information. Similar training workshops will be conducted in other locations in the coming months.

- From 31 March to 2 April, UNICEF and partners with an interest in nutrition in Southern Somalia will support a workshop in Huddur. The objective is 'to review the nature and scope of the nutrition problem in central and south Somalia and on-going programmes addressing those problems.'

For copies of nutrition survey reports and further information related to nutrition, see the FSAU monthly publication ' Nutrition Update ' or contact :noreen.

(pdf* format - 332 KB)