Elephants, Ships & Semantics: A Complex Crisis in Africa
Many East African countries have been battling hunger for years. The crisis in Africa in relation to food is incredibly complex. With Ukrainian ports being tied up during the war for the past six months, their situation has grown desperate. An in-country team member from Convoy described the situation in Kenya: “It’s grim. People are dying.
Yesterday, Convoy of Hope sent nine tons of food to the drought-stricken northern reaches of Kenya. On top of this aid, the first shipment out of Ukraine since the war started recently arrived in East Africa. The shipment, carrying approximately 23,000 metric tons of grain, is hopefully the first of many to land in the region.
People are dying.’
—Chris Dudley, Convoy of Hope
Hope Persists Amid the Food Crisis in Africa
Elephants are gathering at one of Convoy of Hope’s water catchment systems in Kenya. The drought in the region has progressed to the point where wildlife is desperately searching for water and directly competing with local communities for the precious resource.
“They didn’t have elephants around for years, but they came back because of the water,” said Convoy’s Chris Dudley. “They broke down our fence and claimed our spot. Nobody is arguing with them.”
But even amid terrible circumstances, hope persists. One community leader told a Convoy team member that when the elephants walk in the mostly dry water catchment area, it compacts the soil. Meaning, the system will do an even better job retaining water when it refills.
Hope — in the face of this level of adversity — is truly inspiring.
What Happens When Famine Is Declared
According to a recent article published by The Guardian, “There is no specific funding mechanism triggered by the declaration of a famine, but U.N. agencies and aid organizations have historically been able to assume that the labeling of the crisis would prompt sluggish donors to step up.”
In short, it’s up to individual governments, agencies, and nonprofits to use the declaration of famine to spur the world into action and help in the situation.
Convoy of Hope is honored to come alongside partners and donors to bring help to the hopeless. To provide relief through Convoy of Hope’s Crisis Relief Fund, click here.