The United Nations has declared that parts of Somalia are suffering from a famine, where tens of thousands of Somalians have died from the worst hunger emergency in a generation.
A combination of war, drought, neglect and skyrocketing food prices is taking over the Horn of Africa, with some regions experiencing the least amount of rainfall they have received in more than 60 years. This is the worst food crisis in Somalia in 20 years, and urgent care is needed in order to save lives.
According to Mark Bowden, the United Nation’s top official, the famine will spread to all eight regions of Somalia within 2 months if immediate action is not taken. Between diseases and a poor harvesting season, resources for clean water and food are becoming more difficult to come by each day. Food prices have increased by 270 percent over the past year.
Famine is defined as 2 adults or 4 children out of 10,000 in one region dying in a day, and when one third of all children are malnourished. In the current conditions in Somalia, there are 6 deaths a day and more than half of the children are malnourished.
Aside from the crisis happening among Somalians, the country is also considered to be one of the most difficult to work in. The United Nations World Food Program lost 14 workers in the past year, as attacks on relief camps are frequent. If a safe passage is guaranteed, the group is looking to send out workers.
The United States is a frequent donor to Somalia and its relief efforts, but there are fears that funds sent will be diverted by various groups. The United Nations claims to be taking all possible precautions to make sure funds are reaching their intended destination.
Famine has been a world issue for thousands of years, and efforts are made each and every day to prevent deaths around the world as a result of starvation. One simple approach could be for those in developed countries to change the way we eat to minimize wasted resources and create a balance that provides food for every citizen of the world, no matter how quickly the population grows.