With animals turning into skeletons and drought stretching up to kilometres, US has decided to send disaster teams in response to Ethiopia’s worst drought.
Teams from the U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID) and Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) have reached Ethiopia.
“With the announcement of the DART, we are acting to prevent a major humanitarian crisis and protect Ethiopia’s hard-earned development progress,” USAID’s administrator Gayle Smith said in a report by CNN.
Health experts of nutrition, water, sanitation and hygiene will incorporate their efforts in the project in the next few days.
According to Ethiopian government, 10.2 million people require food assistance. About 8 million people are food insecure, while 2 millions don’t have access to clean drinking water.
“With this latest, even more terrible drought hitting Ethiopia just five years later, the need to build resilience is more urgent than ever,” said Nancy Lindborg, president of United States Institute of Peace.
Unites Nation estimates that 15 million people could suffer from acute malnutrition if they stop getting aid from donors.
The shortage of donation is another concern. If the donors-money runs out in May, malnutrition could take its toll on the Ethiopians.
“The worst impacts of this drought still lie ahead. The scale and severity of this crisis is expected to far outstrip available resources.” USAID quoted in a report by Voice of America.
Following spring rains in February, farmers don’t have enough seeds to feed all.
Around $4 million of maize and wheat seeds are being provided to more than 2 million families by USAID.
United States and other global donors are supporting Ethiopian government’s Productive Safety Net Program. Around 7.9 million food-deprived Ethiopians are receiving rations through it.
Under U.S. government’s global hunger initiative, Feed the Future, Ethiopia also desires to foster small farmers’ yields.
“It is imperative … to save lives and ensure that tens of millions of people aren’t pushed back into extreme poverty,” said the USAID.