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Horn of Africa Crisis: What We're Doing in Kenya

Our teams are scaling up our emergency nutrition programs as the numbers of acutely malnourished children admitted for treatment have more than doubled over the last few months.
Mandera, Kenya in 2009. Credit: Marlene Francia

Across Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, and Djibouti, we’re helping thousands of children in the hardest-hit regions—from the 3,000 malnourished children we’re treating in Somalia, to our efforts in Garbatulla, Kenya, where one in five children is now malnourished. We’re racing to reduce the impact of water shortages by constructing wells, drilling boreholes, and installing storage devices to capture future rainfall, in addition to promoting hygiene to prevent the spread of diarrhea, cholera, and other water-borne diseases.

An estimated 50,000 to 65,000 young children currently suffer from deadly severe acute malnutrition in drought-stricken Kenya. With another 320,000 children afflicted with moderate acute malnutrition—and some 90,000 undernourished pregnant and nursing women—Action Against Hunger is racing to expand in the affected districts before conditions deteriorate further.

With programs in the Garbatulla, Merty, Upper Tana River, Kitui, Mwingi, Makueni, and West Pokot districts, and expanding operations in the Dadaab camps, our teams are scaling up our emergency nutrition programs as the numbers of acutely malnourished children admitted for treatment have more than doubled over the last few months.

Nutrition:

  • In northern Kenya, admissions to our inpatient therapeutic nutritional centers have more than doubled between March and June, from 352 to 722.
  • We’ve provided lifesaving therapeutic treatment for over 10,500 children in Kenya between March and July.

Food Security:

  • Our food security programs—purchasing drought-threatened livestock—have provided income for some 30,000 agro-pastoralists and much needed protein for 2,200 vulnerable households.
  • Irrigational agriculture programs have provided 100 households who have lost their cattle, with the tools and training to grow corn and drought-resistant vegetables.

Water, Sanitation & Hygiene:

  • Given the drought, we’re carrying out a range of activities: water source rehabilitation, dam construction to collect water from the next rainy season, and the distribution of water filters to more than 21,000 people.
  • In Dadaab refugee camp, along Kenya’s border with Somalia, our teams are launching emergency water, sanitation, & hygiene programs to support the continued influx of Somali refugees.

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