Somalia: Food Assistance Fact Sheet – Updated June 17, 2019
Nearly three decades of instability in Somalia have resulted in widespread insecurity, poverty, and recurrent food and nutrition crises. Somalia is also prone to natural hazards, such as droughts and floods, which exacerbate food insecurity.
Due to consecutive seasons of poor rainfall, approximately 1.7 million people in Somalia face Crisis (IPC 3) or higher levels of acute food insecurity and require emergency food assistance, according to the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET).* An additional 3.4 million people are experiencing Stressed (IPC 2) levels of acute food insecurity and require livelihoods support to prevent further decline. The worst-affected areas include parts of Awdal, Bari,
Galgaduud, Hiraan, Mudug, Nugaal, Sanaag, Sool, and Woqooyi Galbeed regions, where populations are expected to experience Emergency (IPC 4) conditions through September.
Widespread crop failure and a rapid decline in livestock productivity will increase the number of people experiencing Crisis or worse to 2.2 million, nearly half of whom are internally displaced persons, by July. An immediate and sustained scale-up of humanitarian assistance is needed to prevent deterioration of conditions.
Following below-average October-to-December 2018 deyr rainfall, the April-to-June 2019 gu rainfall will also be below-average. The drierthan-normal conditions are driving food insecurity, as households have begun spending more of their income on water, adding to their already high debt levels. Significant loss of pasture resources is leading to declining livestock conditions and milk production among pastoralist households, who may be forced to further reduce herd sizes after sustaining losses during the 2016-2017 drought, according to FEWS NET. Additionally, limited agricultural production and low demand for agricultural labor is limiting food access for farming households. Some poor households have already exhausted food stocks and are entirely dependent on markets to purchase food.
The number of admissions for acute malnutrition is seasonally high, according to the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF). More than 954,000 children younger than five years of age will be malnourished in 2019, including 174,000 children facing severe acute malnutrition.
USAID's Office of Food for Peace (FFP) targets food-insecure Somali households and internally displaced persons (IDPs) countrywide with emergency food and nutrition assistance, as well as livelihoods support. FFP partners with the UN World Food Program (WFP) and other humanitarian organizations to provide in-kind food and nutrition assistance, as well as income support and other market-based activities, such as unconditional cash transfers for food, cash-for-work activities, food vouchers and food-for-vocational training. FFP also provides funding for the prevention and treatment of acute malnutrition in children and pregnant and lactating women.
Source: US Agency for International Development