ACT Alliance Preliminary Appeal: Drought Response in Kenya - KEN 171

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Kenya’s President, Uhuru Kenyatta, declared on 9th February 2017, the on-going drought in Kenya as being a national disaster. The drought is affecting 23 out of 47 counties reported to be at alarm stage. The current drought situation is predicted to last until July 2017. It comes with an urgent plea from government and community leaders for local and international assistance to respond to immediate emergency needs, followed by an early recovery phase of rebuilding pastoral and farmer’s lost livelihoods. Causes of drought are attributed to a late start of short rains between the months of October and November 2016. These rains were also very brief and inadequate. As a result, there has been a persistent and widespread deficit of water and food for humans and scarce water and pasture for livestock resulting in livestock mortality rates of 5%.

In addition, poor 2016 short rains affected proper growth of marginal crop producing regions which have predicted crop failure of up to 70 % (compared to a 5 years average already resulting in an increase of food prices). Population numbers of people affected by drought stress are increasing and currently stand at 2.7 million (February 2017). Most affected populations are pastoral communities residing in Arid and Semi-Arid counties of Northern Kenya and marginal farming communities especially those whose livelihood income is based solely on agriculture.

The ACT Kenya Forum plans on responding to the drought emergency via ACT members Church World Service, Finn Church Aid, Lutheran World Federation and National Council of Churches of Kenya, by providing humanitarian assistance on WASH, Food Security, Protection and Disaster Risk Reduction.