Somalia Drought 2017 – Why is not enough aid getting to Somalia
Half of Somalias population is at risk of famine and starvation, yet global communities are still having numerous problems getting aid to the areas in Somalia that truly need it to save those who are dying of starvation and disease everyday! Because Somalia’s independence was not recognised in 1991, this is now causing problems in regards to aid being supplied there. Bilateral aid is aid transferred directly from one country to another, but because of Somalias status as a country not being recognised, thousands of people go on suffering whilst they are waiting for late responses from multilateral aid, which comes from a collective of international organisations receiving money from several countries. These countries did not take heed from the previous drought or take cheaper preventative action to prevent this happening again. Multilateral aid comes with a high administration costs and is causing a serious delay in aid being transported to the rural areas in Somalia where many people including children are literally starving to death. Some Somali people are still living as nomads in the harsh landscapes of Somalia from the drought they faced in 2011. Due to Somalias ongoing lack of political stability more people will continue to join them, the further East you go into Somalia the worse the situation is, mainstream charities are unable to reach these real destitute areas where many families are dying every day because of food security constraints, which means those who are in the most severe need continue to go without. The few hospitals that are running are dangerously overcrowded and under resourced to cope with the outbreak of disease and illness.
The drought and famine in Somalia is an extremely fast moving crisis, an Somali people are now at the mercy of an overwhelmed aid system. Furthermore, aid that does make it into Somalia is being delayed by small political regimes like al Shabab who can be untrusting of the help arriving from the UN. Meanwhile families in Somalia are paying there absolute all to save their children, and to get access to basic healthcare. The little food that does remain in these areas are priced extortionately high due to the importing costs, several unsuccessful attempts to grow food has meant thousands of families are fully dependant on the little aid they come across in small refugee camps and food that is being shipped in from other countries like Ethiopia.
Regardless of the reasons and causes of this excruciating situation, the outcome is still the same for our Somali brothers and sisters, many families and individuals are struggling to find food and basic care and will continue to suffer until something is done, mothers are watching their children die, fathers are having to leave their villages in search for their families provision and thousands more are forced to make a journey they are not even confident they can complete to Kenya to the refugee camp in Dadaab.
If the children of Somalia are not dying from acute malnutrition and starvation then they are dying from the outbreak of Cholera that has swept the north region of Somalia, something that is so easily cured in the West, medicine we take for granted everyday! Hospitals are having to ration the little they have to help only those on the brink of death, which is often the very young or old as their bodies cannot cope with the severe malnutrition from having no food or drink for days on end. Cholera is a bacteria often contracted through unclean water which multiplies rapidly in the small intestine, causing severe diarrhoea/ vomiting and dehydration. Many days without food and drink, not even enough strength to stand and walk, and then on top of this have your body expel the little nourishment you may have had left, and dying in agony. Even when small relief comes in the medical aid, the severe malnutrition alone makes it very difficult and complicated to cure anything. The situation of the Somali people only continues to worsen as figures as high as £853 million have been estimated to help all those in East Africa dying from the famine.
Other issues the Somali people face is mental health, due to a lack of food and water and nutrition many have become mentally ill and become a burden on their families and the camps they live in. With no medication or help they are left to worsen and cause problems for the rest of the inhabitants of the camps. The fortunate ones make it to the towns and cities where they may find some basic help.