A crucial lifeline is restoring dignity for drought-affected families in Somalia

  • 54-year-old Isaaq Abdirahman’s crops were wiped out by the severe drought in Somalia. When conditions did not improve, he moved his family to a displacement camp on the outskirts of Baidoa where they can access food and water from aid organizations.
    CC BY-NC-ND / ICRC / Mohamed Abdikarim
  • Isaaq now lives alone in his village, 15 kilometers outside Baidoa town. Like other farmers, he hopes that Somalia’s annual rainfall will come soon. Most of the country’s rain falls at this time of the year, making this the main cropping season.
    CC BY-NC-ND / ICRC / Mohamed Abdikarim
  • Farmers like Isaaq are among the worst hit by the successive failed rains last year that has exacerbated the drought conditions across the country. In response, the ICRC has provided cash grants of $100 over 3,000 rural households in Baidoa district to help them cope with the drought.
    CC BY-NC-ND / ICRC / Mohamed Abdikarim
  • The money has helped Isaaq to buy food for his family and acquire seeds and farming inputs in anticipation of the rains. One of the main strengths of this type of assistance is that it gives beneficiaries choice.
    CC BY-NC-ND / ICRC / Mohamed Abdikarim
  • “$100 dollars deposited in your account.” The cash is sent through a direct transfer to the receiver's mobile phone. This system is secure and transparent.
    CC BY-NC-ND / ICRC / Mohamed Abdikarim
  • Isaaq will grow sorghum, a popular crop among farmers and the staple food for most rural homes the region. The crops grow with little attention and the harvest can feed his family well into the next rainy season in December. The stalks of the crops are fed to the animals - nothing goes to waste.
    CC BY-NC-ND / ICRC / Mohamed Abdikarim
  • In all, the ICRC, with the support of the Somali Red Crescent Society (SRCS), will provide cash to up to 60,000 drought-afflicted families (360,000 persons).
    CC BY-NC-ND / ICRC / Mohamed Abdikarim
  • An overview of the ICRC’s emergency response to the drought in Somalia.
    CC BY-NC-ND / ICRC / Mohamed Abdikarim
15 May 2017

A cash injection is giving families in Somalia a lifeline that will see them through potentially one of the most severe droughts in recent history. 55,000 families have already received $100 each, which will help to improve their current situation.

Isaaq Abdirahman, a 54-year-old farmer in a rural village in Bay region, lost all his crops to the drought ravaging many parts of Somalia. He moved his wife and children to one of the crowded IDP camps on the outskirts of Baidoa town where they have access to food and water from aid agencies. Isaaq remained behind to prepare his land for the April-June rainy season, known as the Gu.

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