Kenya: Drought Emergency appeal n° MDR64008

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This Emergency Appeal seeks a total of 3,844,037 Swiss francs to enable the IFRC to support the Kenya Red Cross Society (KRCS) to deliver assistance and support to some 114,620 people for 12 months, with a focus on the following sectors: Health; Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Promotion(WASH); Livelihoods, Nutrition and Food Security; and Disaster Risk Reduction. The planned response reflects the current situation and information available at this time of the evolving operation, and will be adjusted based on further developments and more detailed assessments.

The operational strategy

Kenya has a complex climate that varies significantly between its coastal, interior and highland regions and from season to season, year to year, and decade to decade. Due to poor performance of the long rains in MarchApril-May 2016, some pastoral and marginal farming communities in the arid and semi-arid lands (ASALs) of the country are experiencing moderate to severe drought. ASALs make up more than 80 per cent of the country’s land mass and are home to approximately 36 per cent of the population. The ASALs have the lowest development indicators and the highest incidence of poverty in the country. The incidence of poverty in the ASALs is 55.3 per cent compared to the national average of 45.2 per cent (IFAD 2015). Major drought incidences occur in Kenya about every 10 years, and moderate drought incidences every three to four years. Historically, these extreme climatic events have caused significant loss of life, increase in morbidities related to inadequate nutrition and lack of access to adequate, clean and safe water, and increased severity of disease that have adversely affected the national economy.

According to the Kenya Food Security Steering Group Joint Long Rains assessment report (KFSSG LRA), a total of 1,254,600 people mainly from pastoral (750,900 people) and marginal agricultural areas (503,700 people) in 19 ASAL counties2 are acutely food insecure, as they were directly affected by the poor rains early 2016, as well as other existing and emerging vulnerabilities, and require immediate food assistance. This is an increase of 500,000 more people in need compared to estimates from the February 2016 short rains assessment. There are indications that the situation is likely to worsen further by January 2017.