IGAD predicts good rains for the next season in parts of Kenya with food security expected to improve slightly in the worst-affected areas.
The number of admissions to nutritional feeding centres and outpatient sites in the most drought-affected counties in northern Kenya have either stabilized or reduced. No deaths due to malnutrition were reported this week.
Despite a number of recently reported health alerts and disease outbreaks, the overall health situation in drought-affected areas has remained mostly stable except for reports this week from North Eastern Province indicating increases in watery diarrhoea. No new cholera cases have been reported, and no additional polio cases were confirmed beyond the initial two cases last week.
The school year began on 5 September 2011. UNICEF has worked closely with the MoE to ensure 64,740 pupils (aged 3-13 attending early childhood development programmes and primary school) in the hardest hit, drought affected areas have school supplies. The priority areas included Garissa, Mandera, Isiolo, Marsabit and Wajir. Supplies provided include 442 education kits benefitting 30,940 primary school children and 676 ECD kits benefitting 33,800 early learners.
Diversion of government budgetary funds meant to hire more teachers and ease classroom overcrowding has led to a teachers’ strike one day after school started. The strike affects more than 10 million children in both primary and secondary schools across the country, including in drought-affected areas.