Usually, people say that life is priceless, yet sometimes the price can be as little as two drops of water.
While it might only seem just “thought” to you, people in Somalia have been living this life for the last 10 years. Yes, a whole decade!
The residents of Somalia, Kenya, and other east-African countries have faced a severe drought in the past years. The scarcity of water in the region has led to malnutrition in children and a compromised standard of living.
According to reports of a study conducted by UNICEF in December 2019, the General Acute Malnutrition is above the 10 percent threshold. The rate of fatality in children is the highest in Somalia, i.e., 12.7%.
Having experienced only one proper rainfall season since 2011, the situation of nutrition and dryness in Somalia has decreed down the years.
Several organizations, including UNICEF, have taken measures to ensure food supplies with limited resources to the people.
It is not that the East-African region had surplus rains before the drought. Yet, it is also true that the scarcity of rainfall was never to this extent. People started accepting the shortage of rain and started their own countermeasures to collect more water.
Though the circumstances changed in 2011, and people experienced what they wouldn’t have thought of. With time, over 50% of the total population had hunger but no quality food enough for anyone.
The region faced the worst drought in 60 years, which led to a formal statement of famine from the government.
When the situation was expected to be in control and to help Somalis fight with the drought, more than 0.2 million people lost the battle of survival.
The deaths included a considerable number of children under the age of five.
Understanding the situation in the area, experts started to find ways to control the current situation and provide food to the residents.
Education about crops and essential farmings is used by the farmers to cut off the bushes on their land to cultivate climate-friendly crops rising to 50% more than they already had.
The next years were tougher than the previous. The monsoon rains, just like every time, were deprived of the moisture and seemed insufficient for the people.
Individuals who survived on crops grown and sold to make some money were in distress owing to the condition and what they could foresee.
The prayers for rain hiked as people began to run short on food, and every meal was less than the previous. The government made the necessary arrangements to store the rainwater. Yet, the hopes died when the rainfall was again not sufficient for the population.
This year was the start of job hunting as government was unable to provide for its citizens.
The year 2017 was a rollercoaster ride with more lows than the highs, however. The beginning of the year brought more anxiety and hunger.
About 7 million Somalis needed food supplies to stay alive.
The only high this year was the long rains, which came as a relief, but the people already had a number of problems to cater to. The absence of water and proper sanitation over the years gave rise to cholera, typhoid, and measles, risking thousands of lives.
The timely reaction and invention to save as much rainwater as possible worked.
The locals were able to save quite an amount of water in the next years, yet the situation is not ideal in the region. Many people in Somalia are still victims of malnutrition, while the United Nations predicts a 40% rise in hungry households in Somalia.
This number is enormous, and it is not easy to get rid of hunger and poverty just in a moment.
The Somalian brothers and sisters are in dire need of help to save their lives and reduce the mortality rate.
The 40% increase in the number of hunger-struck families means more than 4 million eyes in the regions looking forward to the aid provided by others worldwide.
Many people saw their loved ones die right in front of them and a lot of people lost their houses forever.
Halima Omar, a woman from the lower Shebelle, told us how she lived a good life before the famine, and nothing is left for her in her hometown now.
While moving to a UN displacement camp, she sobs while telling that six of her children are dead, and she is losing hope.
What Does The United Nations Say?
The secretary-general of the United Nations mentioned that the estimated aid needed to facilitate 11 million people in East-Africa is $1.6 billion.
Foreign Aids have contributed towards a better Somalia but a huge amount still has to be collected.
Although the world is contributing toward the greater good, aiding is not the solution for Somalia.
Volunteers and doctors are treating the children and carving job opportunities for the young. Some organizations have stepped forward to build solar-powered wells in the region where the water can be stored for a long time. When people join hands to work for the betterment of something, the multiplied efforts brags better results. The Muslim brothers and sisters in Somalia and other East-African regions are awaiting our help in this ordeal of misery.