The organisations are working in Tahoua in the northwest of Niger, one of the provinces most severely hit by the famine. Around 530,000 people live in Tahoua, 400,000 of them affected by famine. Of the 80,000 under five-year-old children, every fifth is showing signs of undernutrition. The children are being given special therapeutic foods and their families extra food rations.
"It's a fight against time", says spokeswoman Marion Aberle. "Around 400 people - the majority children - are dying from the effects of undernutrition every day, and that's just in the country's northwest. If we react promptly, we can stop the situation from getting even worse."
Due to drought and the locust plague last year, there were already signs of a serious food shortage back in January. In Tahoua, a survey carried out in March by local authorities revealed that only a quarter of the required food was available. The next crops are not expected until October.
Marion Aberle, Press Spokeswoman
Tel. 0228 / 2288 - 114
Mobile 0172 / 25 25 962
Stefanie Koop, Press Officer
Tel. 0228 / 2288 - 404
Assistant: Doris Theisen
Tel. 0228 / 22 88 - 128