Starving Somali children, livestock share food

starving-somali-childFrom SAAD MUSE in Mogadishu, Somalia
MOGADISHU, (CAJ News) – ELDER children in Somalia are skipping meals so they can share food with livestock and enable younger siblings survive on cow’s milk.
This is among the repercussions of severe drought that has displaced thousands south of the country.
More than 320 000 children are believed to be acutely malnourished and need urgent nutrition support.
In some villages, older children are asked to forego meals and give their food to livestock, which are dying daily from hunger.
Starving livestock struggle to lactate, hence elder children have to supplement them.
Education has been disrupted as families tend to move and relocate in search of food and water.
In addition, vegetation records are believed to have surpassed those observed during the 2010/2011 drought, which claimed up to 258 000 people lives.
Meanwhile, some communities are traveling as far as 125 kilometres, making water consumption drop below 3 litres per person per day.
The lowest standard of basic water needs is set at 7,5 litres.
Countrywide, it is feared up to 5,6 million people will need emergency food assistance in 2017 while 1,2 million children and pregnant and lactating mothers will require supplementary feeding.
More than 9 million people will not have regular access to safe drinking water.
“All actors need to act now to avert any further food and livelihood crisis,” said an Agency for Technical Cooperation and Development spokesperson.
CAJ News

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