Having teetered on the brink of famine throughout much of 2017, rain over the final three months of the year was expected to bring much-needed relief to millions of people in Somalia. Unfortunately, the October-December rains failed to arrive. What was supposed to be three months of rainfall amounted to little more than three weeks of on-and-off showers.
That was the fourth consecutive rainy season to have failed, leaving millions of people facing into 2018 with no end in sight for their suffering.
Amina Ahmed, Trócaire Somalia
This month Trócaire celebrated the graduation of 87 young people between the ages of 14 and 29 years, who participated in an EU-funded skills training project in Belet Hawa, Gedo, Somalia.
Trócaire established the new programme in Gedo with the objective of increasing the participation of youth and adults, including those from vulnerable groups, in vocational education and training.
Trócaire and its Caritas partners are supporting South Sudanese refugees who have fled into the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to escape persecution and hunger in their conflict-torn, drought hit country. Nelly Maonde, Trócaire Humanitarian Programme Advisor, reports on a recent visit to Biringi refugee camp in Ituri province, north east DRC.
Trócaire has welcomed today’s Budget 2018 announcement to increase overseas Official Development Assistance (ODA). However, Ireland is still way off track to achieving its international commitment.
Trócaire welcomes today’s Budget 2018 announcement to increase ODA by €13m in spending.
Speaking recently at the launch of the Irish Aid annual report, Minister Simon Coveney highlighted the importance of having a clear roadmap to achieve Ireland’s long standing commitment to provide 0.7pc of GNI* by 2025.
David O’Hare reports from Freetown in Sierra Leone where hundreds lost their lives in a massive landslide on 14 August.
I wake up on my first morning in Freetown, the capital of Sierra Leone, to the sound of torrential rain outside.
I know that this sound must strike fear in people from Matome on the outskirts of Freetown. There was torrential rain right through the night and into the early morning of Monday 14 August when disaster struck their community.
By Liz Evers
Fundraising appeal has helped Trócaire scale up its efforts in East African countries where drought situation continues to deteriorate.
For several months now, the East African countries of Somalia, South Sudan, Ethiopia and Kenya have been experiencing the devastating impacts of prolonged drought. Over 26 million people in the affected regions are now severely food insecure.
Trócaire has been engaged in a relief effort with fellow humanitarian agencies, funding partners and local organisations to support the most vulnerable and worst impacted.
Eoin Wrenn reports on the profound social problems, including high instances of violence and abuse, in the slums of Nakuru in Kenya and some of Trócaire’s efforts to address them.
It is not very often that I feel a sense of disillusionment after spending time with communities that Trócaire is working with.
However, this is how I felt last week after spending a few days in the slums of Nakuru, the fourth largest city in Kenya, about 160km from the capital Nairobi.
Trócaire is providing 'dignity kits' to people from the communities hit by a devastating mudslide in Sierra Leone. At least 500 people are known to have died, while many more are still unaccounted for.
Last Monday, 14 August, a mudslide swept through hillside communities in Freetown, Sierra Leone.
The slopes of Mount Sugar Loaf above Freetown have suffered years of deforestation. That, coupled with recent heavy rains, sent the mudslide speeding down the mountain.
New survey reveals alarming malnutrition rates in Turkana, East Pokot, Mandera, Samburu, and West Pokot
Nearly 73,000 children in Kenya are severely malnourished and at risk of dying from drought-related hunger unless urgent aid is made immediately available.
The warning comes as results from joint nutrition assessments conducted by the County Departments of Health and UNICEF, and nine aid organisations working on the ground— including Save the Children—are revealed.
Posted by Liz Evers
As Kenya’s 8 August general election fast approaches, journalist Bill Corcoran takes a look at Trócaire’s peace-building initiatives in the country’s hotspots of intertribal violence.
Edward Shihima has seen first-hand the impact that peace building has on communities in Kibera, a Nairobi slum overwhelmed by intertribal violence following the country’s disputed general elections in 2007.
Samson Haileyesus from CST Together (joint office of Catholic agencies CAFOD, SCIAF and Trócaire) reports from Borana in the Oromia Region of southern Ethiopia where livelihoods have been devastated by three consecutive droughts.
The atmosphere is sombre at the office of the Dembi Peasants’ Association in Borana, just 27 kilometres from the border with Kenya.
The village elders have gathered to discuss how they can get by after experiencing three droughts in three consecutive years.
In Trócaire’s new Strategic Plan 2016 – 2020, Humanitarian Response is one of three priority areas of work. Trócaire has a clear mandate to act on the humanitarian imperative and respond to those in greatest need in crises.
by Liz Evers
Trócaire’s Niamh McCarthy reports on her recent visit to Turkana in Kenya, where she saw the awful impact of the ongoing drought on the country’s most vulnerable citizens – its children.
I recently returned to Ireland from Lodwar in the arid Turkana district of Kenya, where I had travelled to help generate much-needed media coverage of the drought there.
- The EU-Turkey plan is not designed in the best interests of refugees and asylum seekers, including Syrian civilians, but is instead focuses on containing the flow of displaced people trying to reach European countries.
- The plan has the potential to seriously erode the crucial protection for refugees afforded them under international law by designating Turkey a safe third country– leading to potential violation of the principle of non-refoulement.
This Sunday, South Sudan will mark six years since it became an independent country. Instead of marking Independence Day with pomp and festivity, the mood in the youngest nation on earth will be one of mourning as people wonder how a country with such potential has ended up in a spiral of conflict, rampant inflation and mass hunger.
Two million South Sudanese - almost one in four of its population - have been forced to flee the country since the outbreak of conflict in December 2013. Nine out of ten South Sudanese refugees in neighbouring countries are women and children.
Voices of women in conflict in Myanmar
Posted by Niamh O'Byrne
Since the conflict reignited in 2011 in Kachin State, Myanmar, over 100,000 internally people remain living in internally displaced persons (IDP) camps. To date, efforts at brokering peace have not resulted in a cessation of armed conflict.
The term ‘localisation’ has become the buzzword of 2017, a subject that has taken on a new dimension due to the commitments made as part of the Grand Bargain1 agreed at the World Humanitarian Summit in May 2016.
International actors are paying more attention to the role of local and national organisations while national actors want to play a bigger role in humanitarian response and be recognised as major players in first line response.
With severe drought gripping many parts of East Africa, millions of people are facing possible starvation in the coming months. David O’Hare from Trócaire recently returned from northern Kenya where he saw the impact of the crisis on people there.
Mary Nakodos Lokerian walked for 13km to get to the emergency food distribution funded by Trócaire near the centre of Lodwar town in northern Kenya.
Catholic aid agencies call for a new deal, as Syrian refugees hit more than five million
A group of Catholic aid agencies are calling on this week's Brussels Conference on Syria to recommit support to Syrians forced to flee, as more than five million Syrians - or a quarter of the country’s pre-war population - have been forced to cross borders and register as refugees in neighbouring countries.