''Every year, for the last five years, the ICRC vaccinates animals, such as camels, cattle, sheep, goats and donkeys, to boost the immunity of the livestock against most prevalent animal diseases,'' said Dr Abdiselam Mohammed, economic security expert for ICRC Ethiopia.
The ICRC delivers livestock vaccination and animal health services to conflict and violence-affected pastoral and semi-pastoral communities in Ethiopia. From January to the end of March 2022, over 1.1 million animals will be vaccinated by the ICRC in conflict-affected pastoral and semi-pastoral communities of Somali and Oromia regions, more specifically in Meyumuluke, Qubi, Lagahida, Kumbi and Meyumuluke districts.
''The diseases are identified by a preliminary assessment conducted in collaboration with livestock and pastoral development bureaus of both Somali and Oromia regions,'' he added.
According to Kamil Ahmed, head of the Qubi district livestock office in Somali region, the campaign has brought many benefits to the community, including easy access to livestock vaccination, improved health of the animals and decreased the security risks occurring when pastoralists went to vaccinate their animals.
''Considering the challenges after the conflict, one can question the survival of our animals if the vaccinations and other services were not provided by the Red Cross,'' remarked Siyad Mahamud, the resident of Qubi district.
For pastoral and semi pastoral communities, their animals are the major asset for their livelihood. To sustain this in conflict and violence-affected areas, the ICRC is implementing a program that includes livestock vaccination, animal health treatment and training for community animal health workers.