UN Special Envoy for El Niño and Climate, Mary Robinson, is on a three-day trip to Ethiopia with Concern Worldwide, Trocaire and Goal Global at the moment. Ethiopia is currently facing its worst drought in decades with over 10.2 million people in need of food aid.
Across Ethiopia, the global weather phenomenon that is the El Niño effect has caused the worst drought in 50 years, wiped out crops and devastated livestock. Over 10 million people are rapidly running out of food and require urgent assistance. An estimated 458,000 children are in need of treatment from severe acute malnutrition and more than 2.5 million children, and pregnant and lactating women are in need of supplementary feeding. Water shortages have given rise to hygiene issues, leading to water-related public health concerns, including scabies.
Concern Worldwide is working with the Government of Ethiopia and international partners to respond to the drought. Since the need for emergency-assistance became apparent in mid-2015, Concern scaled-up its response from ten to 32 of the most affected woredas (districts) in Amhara, Tigray and SNNPR, as well as providing ongoing support to refugees in Gambella. Concern has secured over €10.5 million in additional funding for the crisis from a diverse range of donors including USAID, UN OCHA, Irish Aid and the Canadian government.