Kenya: Drought Appeal No. MDRKE001Operations Update no. 1


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In Brief

Appeal No. MDRKE001; Operations Update no. 1; Period covered: 4 January to 31 January 2006; Appeal coverage: 3% (The stated appeal coverage does not include in-country cash and in-kind donations);

Appeal history:

Launched on 4 January 2006 for CHF 16,369,585 (USD 10.5 million or EUR 12.7 million) for 12 months to assist 329,000 beneficiaries-

Disaster Relief Emergency Funds (DREF) allocated: CHF 427,808.

Outstanding needs: CHF 15,876,449 (USD 12,350,408 or EUR 10,213,548).

Related Emergency or Annual Appeals: East Africa Sub-Regional Programmes; Appeal 2006-2007; Appeal no. MAA64003. Please refer to

Operational Summary: The de-stocking programme of the Kenya Red Cross Society (1) has been successfully concluded in Mandera, Wajir, Marsabit and Kajiado at a cost of CHF 364,407 facilitated through an allocation from the Federation's Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF). The intervention is still ongoing in Garissa and at the time of reporting, a total of 16,589 animals had been purchased, slaughtered and the meat donated back to the communities. So far, relief food has been distributed to a number of districts including Mandera, Marsabit , Isiolo, Turkana, Makueni, Kitui, Ijara, Kajiado, Nyeri, Wajir, Nairobi, Mbeere and Garissa. The national society has also distributed a total of 344 metric tonnes of UNIMIX in Mandera, Marsabit, Isiolo, Turkana, Makueni, Kitui, Mwingi, Ijara, Wajir, Mbeere and Garissa districts. The districts of Turkana, Kitui, Ijara, Nyeri, Nairobi and Mbeere- which were previously not in the Appeal- have been targeted for various interventions including de-stocking and food distribution. This decision will be clarified in the next operations update.

In response to the Kenya Red Cross Society's local appeal, cash and in -kind donations of CHF 1,325,119 and CHF 228,814 respectively (amounting to CHF 1,553,933) have been received to date from the general public and business community. On its part, the government has turned to its own Exchequer as well as making budgetary reallocations from other line ministries in order to raise as much money as possible internally. Foreign governments have pledged and made contributions direct ly to the Government of Kenya and the World Food Programme (WFP).

The following pledges have been made to this operation to date:

  • Norwegian Red Cross: 50 water trucks, 3 delegates, training and three-year support. The first consignment of 27 vehicles, including support vehicles, is expected to arrive in the country by 10 March 2006 and the second consignment is expected to arrive two to three weeks later.

  • ECHO, through the Danish Red Cross: EUR 1.5 million for water and sanitation (WatSan) intervention in Turkana, Kitui, Kwale, Isiolo, Makueni and Marsabit districts (bilateral support);

  • Danish Red Cross: UNIMIX (monetary value to be confirmed);

  • German Red Cross: EUR 150,000 for World Health Organization (WHO) health kits (bilateral support);

  • American Red Cross: USD 150,000 for food and water;

  • Swedish Red Cross: SEK 2,000,000 (to be confirmed);

  • Netherlands Red Cross: EUR 1.2 million;

  • Spanish Red Cross, with private support: WatSan intervention and community service- monetary value to be confirmed (bilateral support);

  • French Red Cross: EUR 250,000 WatSan interventions (possibly bilateral support);

  • Coca Cola: USD 250,000 initially and an additional amount later.


The Government of Kenya declared the current drought a national disaster at the beginning of 2006. The drought continues to deteriorate from bad to worse, as the number of people affected increased dramatically from 2.5 million in 22 districts in mid-December 2005, to 3.5 million in 37 districts by mid-January 2006. Indeed, according to local media reports, up to 40 people- mostly children, have died due to compli cations arising from malnutrition.

A recent Kenya Food Security Meeting (KFSM) report indicates that the most critical delay in rainfall was experienced in the eastern and northern parts of the country. The short rains crop prospects were favourable int he highland areas of Nyanza and Western provinces but poor in Central, Eastern and Coast provinces. The regenerative capacity of the perennial grasses has been lost, and the little pasture and vegetation that has been left will deplete rapidly, as the drought conditions accentuate. Most of the ground is therefore bare and thousands of cattle are dying daily.

With livestock mortality being evidenced, particularly in Isiolo, Wajir Marsabit, Kajiado, Mandera, Garissa and Tana River districts, reports show that the trend in Samburu, Narok, Kitui, Makueni, Laikipia, Tharaka, Moyale districts as well as the marginal agricultural districts of the Coast p rovince also is worsening. The situation in northern Kenya pastoral districts remains precarious. No respite is in sight until the long rain period of March/April. In addition, the water and sanitation issue is critical in Mandera, Wajir, Marsabit and Kaji ado districts, among other districts.

A Kenya Red Cross Society assessment undertaken in Kajiado from 1 to 2 January 2006 confirmed that migration distances had increased from 10 kilometres at the onset of the drought to over 200 kilometres, as s everal seasonal rivers had dried up and 60% of crops had failed. According to the Kajiado district medical officer, the district has recorded five deaths due to drought-related causes. The worst hit categories are pregnant and lactating mothers and children below the age of 5 years. The district nutritionist has predicted a rise in the number of deaths, since the incidence of malnutrition is rising amongst these categories as a result of inadequate food intakes.

In Mandera district, around 60% of the total animal population has been lost to the drought and many more may die if the drought persists. Lack of water in the district is also aggravating the problem as health centres and dispensaries have been forced to operate without this precious commodity. Many schools have not opened despite several assurances by the government to waive school fees due to the extent of the loss of animals which are the communities' main source of income. Boarding schools are worst hit because of the lack of water.

For further information specifically related to this operation please contact:

In Kenya: Abbas Gullet, Secretary General, Kenya Red Cross Society, Email:; Phone +; Fax +

In Kenya: Esther Okwanga, Federation Head of East Africa Sub-Regional Office; Email:; Phone +; Fax+

In Kenya: Anitta Underlin, Federation Head of Regional Delegation, Nairobi; Email:; Phone +; Fax + and Steve Penny, Disaster Management Coordinator, East Africa Regional Delegation, Nairobi; Email:;Phone +; Fax +

In Geneva: Amna Al Ahmar, Federation Regional Officer for Eastern Africa, Africa Dept; Email:; Phone +41.22.730.44.27; Fax +41.22.733.03.95

All International Federation assistance seeks to adhere to the Code of Conduct and is committed to the Humanitarian Charter and Minimum Standards in Disaster Response in delivering assistance to the most vulnerable. For support to or for further information concerning Federation programmes or operations in this or other countries, or for a full description of the national society profile, please access the Federation's website at


(1) Kenya Red Cross Society- refer to:

MAP: Kenya: Drought (as of 4 Jan 2006)

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