Somalia Humanitarian Bulletin, 1 – 30 September 2019

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Funding gap threatens gains in Food Security

  • 2019 Deyr rains begin

  • Senior UN and WB officials visit Somalia

  • Universal Health Coverage road map launched

  • Funding status cause for concern

Funding gap threatens gains in Food Security

Latest analysis indicates that without humanitarian assistance up to 2.1 million people face severe hunger through December, bringing the total number of food insecure Somalis to 6.3 million. Swift donor financial contributions to the Drought Impact Response Plan (DIRP) launched in May enabled aid agencies to scale up assistance currently reaching more than two million people per month in crisis and emergency phases of food insecurity. Despite an announcement by the US Government at the recent Somali Partnership Forum of $257 million it has been allocating for Food Security, WASH and Health, a gap remains. Immediate contributions are urgently required to sustain life-saving assistance through December 2019.

The short duration and erratic distribution of the rains, as well as low river levels led to significant reductions in the area planted and yield of cereal crops. The Gu’ cereal harvest failed in most regions, leaving the worst affected agro pastoral and riverine families unable to meet their minimum food needs given significantly below-average food stocks and income from seasonal agricultural employment.

Southern areas of the country experienced the poorest Gu’ harvest since records have been kept in1995 and nearly 70 per cent lower than the longterm average for 1995-2018. In the northwest, where Gu’ rainfall was below average but better in terms of distribution, the 2019 Gu’/Karan cereal production to be harvested in November/December is expected to be 44 per cent below the 2010-2018 average.

The impact of drought on livestock led to a lack of access to milk, and many poor households have accumulated large debts while struggling to feed their families and retain their remaining livestock. Poor pasture conditions are evident in Mudug, Galgadud, Bakool, Bay, Gedo and Middle Juba regions, with atypical livestock migration reported in Gedo. In northern and central pastoral areas, where significant livestock loss occurred during the 2016/2017 drought, the availability of saleable animals remains low, constraining the ability of poor families to meet their daily food requirements and purchase water for their animals. Milk availability is largely below-average to poor. Although goat prices remain high, many families are unable to sell their animals without endangering the sustainability of their herds and their livelihoods.

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