Horn of Africa Crisis Appeal
Donations matched dollar-for-dollar by Australian Government – ended November 30th
Nearly $500,000 raised!
On the 5th of October, The Australian Government pledged to match every dollar that individuals donated to approved Australian NGOs’ Horn of Africa appeals between the 5th October and 30th November,
Rev. Dr. Kerry Enright, National Director of UnitingWorld attended the announcement made outside Tecoma Uniting Church in Melbourne, and welcomed the Government’s commitment to NGO efforts for the Horn of Africa.
To find out more on the Dollar-to-Dollar Initiative you can view and download a press release by clicking here.
The initiative marked an impressive increase to donations to Australian NGOs. “Australians did what they always do in a significant time of need: they dug deep, and they gave to save lives across the Horn of Africa,” Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd said. Total donations exceeded $12.7 Million.
UnitingWorld received an influx of generous donations throughout this period which came to a total of $171,333.33. With the dollar for dollar initiative, the Australian
Government will match these donations with another $171,333.33. That means the total amount raised in October and November was $342,666.66.
On top of the $134,604.70 raised prior to the Government’s announcement, this will mean a big difference for the work of our partners in some of the most overcrowded refugee camps along the Somalia/Kenya border, to which thousands have fled in the past year.
A huge thank you to everyone who donated.
If you haven’t been keeping up to date with our updates, you can read more about the drought, famine and the work of UnitingWorld’s partners below.
Famine in East Africa
It is estimated that over 12 million will be affected by the worst famine and humanitarian crisis in sixty years across the east of Africa. That’s half Australia’s population. The United Nations-declared famine area is currently restricted to two regions of Somalia. But according to the World Food Programme, the drought is affecting people in Kenya, Somalia, Ethiopia, Sudan and Djibouti.
UnitingWorld is part of a network of faith-based Non-Governmental development agencies who are responding to the growing effects of the severe food shortages in the Horn of Africa.
As part of this network, UnitingWorld will be supporting the Dadaab and Kakuma Refugee Camps in Kenya, which continue to receive refugees from Somalia and Sudan. 1,300 people arrive every day in Dadaab making the camp now the third largest urban center in Kenya with close to 400,000 residents. The camp was originally created to accommodate 90,000, placing great strain on basic necessities like water, sanitation and food distribution. Many families have walked up to 1,000kms, and are in terrible physical condition. Children are suffering severe malnutrition, and there are already many deaths.
UnitingWorld has committed to supporting relief efforts in the Dadaab and Kakuma refugee camps.
Although the Australian Government’s Dollar for Dollar initiative has come to an end, you can still donate by downloading the donation form.
UPDATE – 31st January, 2012
There are currently 463,129 people living in the Dadaab camp on the Kenya-Somalia border. Although security conditions are considered to remain challenging for the foreseeable future, there have been no reports of major security incidents since the end of 2011. The Community Peace and Safety Teams (CPST) are still facing, however, insecurity and tensions among the refuge community.
Movement restrictions prompted by the security situation in the last few months are expected to ease, allowing for a scaling up of camp based activities such as healthcare, education and community activities. In Kambioos, where the start of schooling was postponed until 23 January, enrollment has been weak due to the fact that some schools are still under construction. UnitingWorld’s partner, the Lutheran World Federation (LWF) in working with UNHCR in Kambioos to improve the conditions in camp schools and access to education.
UPDATE – 28th November, 2011
Security continues to be a pressing issue in the Dadaab camp as well as along the Kenya/Somalia border. In the past couple of months there have been attacks on aid workers and convoys that have created challenges to distributing relief to the camp. These attacks have adversely affected the distribution of relief aid to hundreds of thousands of drought-affected Kenyans and hundreds of thousands of refugees in the Dadaab complex where UnitingWorld partners are working.
In light of these security risks, relief efforts have been reduced, in most cases to a minimum of “life saving activities.” UnitingWorld partners are being affected by the insecurity, and have had to scale back their work in the actual camp. Once more police have been posted to Dadaab, their work in providing education and social services will continue. In the meantime they continue to make preparations and coordinate staff from outside the camp.
The Community Peace and Security Teams (CPSTs), managed by our partners in Dadaab, have been recognised for their important role in managing peace and security in the camps.
Dadaab is well over capacity and new arrivals have come to a stop. There are over 465,000 refugees living there, however, and they cannot be forgotten. The work of our partners in opening up roads is now essential in working towards ensuring that all refugees living in the camp have adequate and safe shelter. Without these efforts, refugees will continue to live on the outskirts in makeshift shelters and will therefore be more exposed to various threats.
UPDATE – 22nd September, 2011
The average daily arrival rate (new persons) is still reported to be about 1,100 people per day.
More than 45,000 persons have been relocated from the so called camp outskirts (outside the old camps) to the new sites in the Ifo extension. All agencies in Dadaab are now planning for 2012. The ‘most likely scenario” according to UNHCR is that there will be 550,000 – 600,000 refugees in Dadaab in 2012, 100,000 in Kakuma and 100,000 urban refugees in Kenya. More resources are needed in Dadaab especially resources for a longer term commitment.
UnitingWorld is also supporting relief food distribution in two of the most famine affected districts of Kenya, including Mukaa and Kalawani. Approximately 420 households have initially been selected to receive maize, beans . It is hoped food distribution can be increased in the next few months to other highly affected areas.
To download powerpoint slide with appeal information for use in your church or group, click here
To download copy that can be included in a bulletin, click here
UPDATE – 16th August, 2011
Our partners are directly involved in setting up new extensions to the Dadaab camp to accommodate the new arrivals of refugees. With two of the new extensions (called ifo 2 & 3) now approved, 16,000 refugee’s have already been moved with more to come in the next week. These extensions, however, only increase the overall capacity of Dadaab to between 300,000 – 350,000. This means there will still be issues of overcrowding and settlements outside of camp.
Access to water is becoming more difficult with increases in water prices, dried up water sources and a constant increase in camp numbers.
Therapeutic feeding programs now have approximately 5,000 children with acute malnutrition in their care.
Another significant issue for children in the camps is education. Between January and July of this year over 30,000 children between 5-18 years of age have arrived in Dadaab. While education has often between overlooked in emergency response situations, many, including our partners, are advocating for the strengthening of education to assist in the stability and hope for children. When a child is in a safe learning environment they are less likely to be exposed to other risks.
Our partners in Dadaab have been a part of developing the Community Peace and Security Teams (CPST’s) that work to resolve conflicts and diffuse tense situation within the camp. Picked from refugees already inside Dadaab, the teams are trained for one month before going out into the community. In a densely populated camp, tensions are are frequent and these teams play a critical role in the ensuring the safety of refugees and particularly the most vulnerable.
UPDATE – 12th August, 2011
The number of people in need of assistance in the Horn of Africa has reached around 12.5 million. With five areas in Somalia declared to be in famine, there are over 500,000 Somali refugees in Kenya.
UnitingWorld is no longer accepting donations to this appeal
Thank you to all who generously gave