PWRDF announces $50,000 more for East Africa

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An estimated 16 million people in East Africa are now facing serious hunger as a result of drought and war. Photo: ©UNICEF/UN056039/Holt
An estimated 16 million people in East Africa are now facing serious hunger as a result of drought and war. Photo: ©UNICEF/UN056039/Holt UNICEF and its partners treat children suffering from life threatening severe acute malnutrition (SAM) through Stabilization Centres ñ wards in hospitals for severely acutely malnourished children with additional complications such as illnesses where they receive medical treatment, fortified milk and ready to use therapeutic food (RUTF) ñ generally therapeutic peanut paste. UNICEF supports seven Stabilization Centres in Somaliland. SAM cases without complications are given outpatient treatment in an Outpatient Therapeutic Programme (OTP) where they receive a supply of RUTF. UNICEF is supporting 95 centres in all regions. UNICEF also has 38 mobile nutrition teams which travel round hundreds of sites to assess and treat children and health teams with a nutrition screener. In March 2017 UNICEF will support an additional 9 mobile teams, five Stabilization Centres and 15 fixed OTP sites in the worst affected regions. Last year UNICEF treated 14,000 children suffering from severe acute malnutrition (1,166 a month). Generally UNICEF treats 75% of SAM cases with other organizations arranging treatment for rest who can be reached. So far this year there has been a rise in severely acutely malnourished children to around 1,500 a month so far or 18,000. ñ but a much steeper rise in moderately malnourished children (treated by WFP) who risk becoming severely malnourished. In early 2017 in Somalia, the humanitarian situation in the country continues to deteriorate, with an estimated 6.2 million people (about half of the population) either severely food insecure or in need of livelihood

The Primate’s World Relief and Development Fund (PWRDF) is committing another $50,000 for famine and drought relief in East Africa, the aid agency announced Tuesday, March 14.

PWRDF is making a $20,000 contribution to the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) Canada through the Canadian Foodgrains Bank, an emergency food aid agency of which PWRDF is a member. ADRA is currently operating a program that provides child-friendly spaces and school supplies to displaced families in Juba, South Sudan.

PWRDF is also pledging $30,000 to ACT Alliance, a coalition of church-based agencies, for drought relief in Somalia. The money will help provide food, water, sanitation, education, health care and livestock to people suffering from a severe drought in that country, PWRDF said.

Four seasons of scant rain have devastated crops and livestock in that country, causing many people to sell what they have and borrow food and money to survive, the agency said. About 6.2 million Somalis now need humanitarian aid, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

The funding announcement follows an earlier appeal and commitment of $50,000 PWRDF made for famine and drought relief in South Sudan and Kenya February 24.

All together, an estimated 16 million people in East Africa are now facing serious hunger because of drought and, in South Sudan, war.

Donations to PWRDF’s East Africa emergency response can be made online, by phone (contact Jennifer Brown at 416-924-9192 ext. 355; or 1-866-308-7973) or by mail.

Mailed cheques should be payable to “PWRDF, Emergency Response East Africa,” and sent to:

The Primate’s World Relief and Development Fund
80 Hayden Street
Toronto, Ontario M4Y 3G2

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Tali Folkins
Tali Folkins has worked as a staff reporter for the Law Times and the New Brunswick Telegraph-Journal. His writing has appeared in The Globe and Mail and The United Church Observer.

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