In the Midst of Looming Famine, Relief Brings Hope
With every passing day, several countries in Africa are inching closer to an officially declared famine. Relief is desperately needed at this time. Somalia, Ethiopia, and Kenya are most at-risk, but the entire sub-Saharan region is struggling. People are dying, and entire ways of life are on the brink of extinction. Convoy of Hope is doing everything it can to help address the dire need. And even in the shadow of a looming famine, Convoy has seen the hope a meal can bring.
A Current Tragedy
The news coming out of the Horn of Africa, particularly Somalia, is heart-wrenching. According to the United Nations, thousands of people have died, including nearly 900 children under the age of five. Almost two-thirds of young children and pregnant women in displacement camps suffer from acute malnutrition.
“We cannot wait for famine to be declared; we must act now to safeguard livelihoods and lives,” said Rein Paulsen, Director of the U.N.’s Food and Agriculture Organization Office of Emergencies and Resilience.
While those in Somalia are at the epicenter of the suffering, nations throughout Africa are gripped by unrelenting drought. In Ethiopia’s Tigray region, women are dying during pregnancy or soon after giving birth at five times the pre-war rate. Children under 5 are dying at twice the same rate. Uganda, South Sudan, and Kenya are all experiencing extreme drought. Sudan, Chad, Nigeria, Niger, Mali, and Burkina Faso are all affected, too. While there has not been an official declaration of famine, relief is desparatly needed to save lives.
Famine Relief Delivered
SERV, one of Convoy of Hope’s partners in Kenya, sent us this photo and an update about a man named Joseph.
The first time the team met him, he was severely malnourished and too weak to walk. Since meeting Joseph, the team has been able to continually provide him with food and medication. He is now recovered and is back on his feet and walking again. He even walks to the nearby church to pray. Joseph is grateful to SERV and the Convoy of Hope team for bringing him hope in his time of need.
The image has more significance than some might recognize.
“Culturally, the act of holding the wrist when shaking hands is reserved as a sign of deference and respect for your elders,” explained Convoy of Hope’s Chris Dudley. “This man paid incredible honor to Pastor Moses by shaking his hand while grasping his wrist.”
For Convoy of Hope, transformation sometimes means feeding entire communities through Agriculture, Children’s Feeding, or Women’s Empowerment. Sometimes, that means providing groceries or supplies for an entire town or neighborhood through Community Events, Rural Initiatives, or Disaster Services.
And sometimes, transformation means feeding one man every day so he can live a life that isn’t dominated by hunger.