Dire humanitarian conditions continue in Somalia, as the second consecutive season of below-average rain is again threatening food production. Delayed rains during the peak growing season, between April and June, and parched river beds, have produced harvest levels nearly 70 percent below average in some parts of Somalia, according to the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization. By December, more than 2 million people are likely to face severe hunger and desperately need emergency food assistance.
At the same time, approximately 2.6 million people - or one in five Somalis - are internally displaced, while more than 730,000 are seeking refuge in neighboring countries.
In response to this pending disaster, the US Agency for International Development, or USAID, announced that the United States has provided nearly 257 million dollars in additional humanitarian assistance in Fiscal Year 2019 to help the people in Somalia.
The United States is the largest donor of humanitarian assistance in Somalia, and this latest announcement brings the total contributed by the American people in Fiscal Year 2019 to nearly 498 million dollars.
The assistance will address life-threatening hunger and acute malnutrition and provide safe water, emergency health care, education, and protection to people affected by ongoing conflict and recurrent drought inside Somalia. It will also provide help to Somali refugees in neighboring countries.
The U.S. Government continues to be concerned about the ongoing crisis in Somalia and the lack of sufficient humanitarian funds to address it. Large-scale assistance is urgently needed to prevent conditions in Somalia from worsening.
The United Nations estimates that an additional 400 million dollars in humanitarian funding is needed in Somalia through December 2019. The United States is encouraging other donors to increase their contributions to address Somalia's critical humanitarian needs, and to help the most-vulnerable Somalis build resilience to withstand future hardships.