Ethiopia

Save the Children scales up efforts as crisis in Ethiopia worsens

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Posted
Originally published
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
The Crisis in Ethiopia - Background

In 2002, Ethiopia suffered one of its worst droughts in recent years. The severity of the situation was recognised early in 2002 in the pastoral areas, particularly in Afar Region and Somali Region, which experienced a near failure of the sugum / gu rains. This led to water shortages for both humans and livestock, and a shortage of pasture. Livestock mortality in these areas was high in the middle of 2002 and the condition of surviving herds was poor, resulting in a loss of livestock products (particularly milk) and low market prices. Not only have crop and livestock production been severely affected, so have other income sources. In particular, wage rates have fallen significantly. Combined with low livestock prices and high cereal prices, the purchasing power of households has been eroded. In addition, many households are either chronically food insecure and/or have suffered consecutive years of shocks and therefore have few assets and have exhausted their traditional coping mechanisms.

In many crop-producing areas, the belg rains started on time but were absent in April and May. This together with a delayed start to the kremt rains had a serious impact on long-cycle, high-yielding crops, particularly maize and sorghum (these two crops usually contribute around 40% of national production). The impact was felt mainly in the lowlands, which are more dependent on maize and sorghum than the midlands and highlands. Many farmers were forced to shift to shorter-maturing, lower-yielding varieties and short-cycle crops such as teff, wheat and oil seeds. The immediate impact of this shift was a reduction in the availability of green maize and sorghum, which are normally consumed during the lean season before the main harvest.

In these worst affected areas, households are only expected to be able to meet a maximum of two months food requirements from their own sources, and therefore beneficiary numbers will increase again from January 2003, peaking at 11.3 million people in July. This compares with 7.1 million in 2001. A total of 1.4 million metric tons of food will be required and US$ 76.2 million to implement water, health, nutrition, agriculture and capacity building activities. In addition, just under 3 million people will be kept under close monitoring and may well need assistance towards the end of 2003 if the situation deteriorates further.

The Crisis in Ethiopia - What the Save the Children is Doing:

The International Save the Children Alliance members active in Ethiopia - Denmark, Norway, Sweden, the UK (Alliance lead agency), and the US - feel strongly that urgent action is needed to ensure that the situation does not spiral out of control, and have been working hard to avoid such an eventuality. Save the Children also feels that while addressing this emergency, we must continue to work on long-term development needs in Ethiopia, or our short-term gains will be lost. Earlier this month the Ethiopian government again appealed for international assistance in a document that laid out a worst-case scenario in which up to 14 million people may be in need of food assistance totaling more than one million metric tons. Save the Children has been in the forefront of organizations responding to the rapidly developing situation in various parts of the country with targeted food-aid and nutritional and other assessments, and Alliance members will continue to work together to avert a real crisis for children and the communities on which they rely.

The following information represents Save the Children's updated efforts to fight the current emergency on both the short-term "emergency"; and long-term "food security" fronts:

1. Amhara Region

Save the Children -- Denmark:

  • Danida: June 2002 to May 2004, $1,203,812 for education, rights awareness, HIV and relief activities in Kobo and Habru woredas in North Wollo

  • Danida: September 2002 to August 2003, $408,704 for relief in Gidan woreda in North Wollo

  • Danida: July 2002 to June 2005, $697,147 for HIV/AIDS and children program for 45000 beneficiaries in Woldya, Kobo and Mersa towns.

  • Danida: March 2002 to February 2005, $260,000 for education, rights awareness and HIV/AIDS activities for 26,146 beneficiaries in Meket Woreda.

  • Finida and Danida: October 2002 to September 2005, $453,176 for education, rights awareness and HIV/AIDS sctivities for 50,000 beneficiaries in Gubalafto Woreda.

  • USAID and Danida: September 2002 to August 2005, $323,523 for psychological and social rehabilitation of 1250 displaced children in Woldya town.
SC Denmark also has the following in the pipeline:
  • EU, Danida and LEGO: January 2003 to December 2005, EURO729,156 for education , rights awareness and HIV/AIDS for 45,000 beneficiaries in Gidan Woreda.
Save the Children -- Norway
  • Norwegian Government: June 2002 to December 2003, $459,770 for a food security project in Dabat Woreda in North Wollo. SC Norway also has the following in the pipeline: Norwegian Government: January to May 2003, 5,224 MTs food in North Gonder
Save the Children UK

SC UK is distributing food and cash to affected populations in North and South Wollo and Wag Hamra zones, in response to the current food security situation. This includes:

  • Royal Government of Netherlands: October 2002 to January 2003, 793,000 EURO for cash for relief project for 52,303 beneficiaries in North and South Wollo

  • USAID/FFP: December 2002 to June 2003, 19,240 MTs for 137,000 beneficiaries as part of the multi-annual funded 'Relief to Development' project in Sekota and Gubalafto woredas of Amhara region

  • EU: November to December 2002, 2,432 MTs for 97,000 beneficiaries

  • USAID JEOPS: March to April 2003, 2,346 MTs
2. Somali Region

Save the Children UK

SC UK is distributing food to affected populations in Somali Region, in response to the current food security situation. This includes:

  • DFID: October 2002 to January 2003, 6,400 MTs for 118,265 beneficiaries in Fik zone targeted to both the host and IDP populations

  • CRDA: September to February 2002, 154 MTs targeted to 2,500 beneficiaries within the IDP population as support to the restocking project and repatriation efforts

  • USAID JEOP: December 2002 to June 2003, 12151 MTs for 115,130 beneficiaries in Shinile zone
SC UK has the following in the pipeline:
  • USAID JEOP: February to June 2003, 3,885 MTs for 45,437 beneficiaries in Fik zone

  • ECHO: $706,356 for Emergency Animal Health and WATSAN activities in Fik zone
Save the Children US

SC US is carrying out a number of activities in Somali Region, in response to the current situation. This includes:

  • USAID JEOP: December 2002 to May 2003, 9,118 MTs of food for 89,100 beneficiaries in Shinile zone

  • USAID/FFP: July 2002 to June 2007, $6,000,000 for supplementary feeding, food for work and income generation for 84,000 beneficiaries in Afder zone

  • USAID: October 2002 to September 2007 $4.3 million for food and economic security initiatives in Liben and Afdher Zones
SC US has the following in the pipeline:
  • January 2003 to December 2004, $5,295,000 for livestock vaccination and protection, health and nutrition, water and capacity building activities in Shinile, Gode and Jijiga zones
3. Tigray Region

Save the Children Sweden

SC Sweden carrying out supplementary feeding in Tigray Region, in response to the current food security situation:

  • SIDA: December 2002 to June 2003, 116 MTs for 4,300 beneficiaries targeted to children
SC Sweden has the following in the pipeline:
  • SIDA: June to December 2003, 116 MTs for 4,300 beneficiaries targeted to children
4. Oromiya Region

Save the Children Sweden

SC Sweden is carrying out the following activity in Oromiya Region:

  • SIDA: December 2002 to June 2003, 115 MTs of supplementary food for 3,197 beneficiaries
Save the Children UK

SC UK is distributing food to affected populations in Oromiya Region:

  • USAID JEOP: December 2002 to June 2003, 6,545 MTs for 55,6000 beneficiaries in East Hararghe zone
SC/UK has the following in the pipeline:
  • Norwegian Government: December 2002 to July 2003, US$ 300,000 for supplementary food for East Hararghe zone
Save the Children US

SC US is carrying out the following activities in Oromiya Region:

  • USAID/FFP: July 2002 to June 2007, $2,700,000 for supplementary feeding, food for work and income generating activities for Borena zone. From January 2003, supplementary food distributions to 19,000 households with children less than 2 years old will be implemented.

  • USAID: July 2002 to June 2007, $1,200,000 for human health, animal health, education and capacity building activities for more than 550,000 beneficiaries
Contact:

John Graham
Tel: 29.34.69 / 29.34.66