Hunger and Famine Crises

Food Crisis: More than 20 million people are at risk
Food Crisis: More than 20 million people are at risk

This is the largest hunger emergency in the world. While there are differences between each of these crises, we know that each situation will get worse in the coming months unless urgent help is delivered to those at risk.

January 1, 2018

Donate to the Famine and Hunger Relief Fund.This is a crisis we cannot ignore. 30 million people are facing hunger across East Africa and Yemen. 27 million people lack safe water. Malnutrition is having a disastrous impact and children are among the worst affected.

Oxfam is on the ground in each of these regions, providing food, clean water and sanitation to families who are in desperate need of assistance. We urgently need to scale up our response to save more lives. You can help.


South Sudan

Nyaruach had to flee her home in Leer, South Sudan to protect her family. Photo: Bruno Bierrenbach Feder/Oxfam
Nyaruach had to flee her home in Leer, South Sudan to protect her family. Photo: Bruno Bierrenbach Feder/Oxfam

South Sudan is in the midst of a catastrophic humanitarian crisis driven by three years of brutal civil war. As of September 2018, there is now 1.85 million internally displaced people in South Sudan and 2.4 million who have fled to neighbouring countries. More than 4.5 million people are facing extreme hunger, and 7 million people are in need of humanitarian aid. More than one million of those facing malnutrition are children. 

We are on the ground racing to get food, water and hygiene items to the most vulnerable people. In 2017 we have reached over 600,000 people with emergency and longer-term support.

Donate to the Famine and Hunger Relief Fund.


Horn of Africa

Maryama lives in the the Somali Region of Ethiopia. She told Oxfam she desperately needed food, water and medicine for her children. Photo: Tina Hillier/Oxfam
Maryama lives in the the Somali Region of Ethiopia. She told Oxfam she desperately needed food, water and medicine for her children. Photo: Tina Hillier/Oxfam

Across the East and Horn of Africa 15 million people are in need of emergency food and water due to severe drought across Ethiopia, Somalia and Kenya. On top of a food crisis, the region has been hit by the worst flooding in 30 years. Significant rain has fallen on drought stricken ground causing 1.5 million people to be affected.

Oxfam is providing immediate life-saving aid and working on long term solutions to end the drought. As of 28 September 2017, Oxfam had provided safe clean water, cash assistance and sanitation to 1.8 million people in Ethiopia, Kenya and Somaliland.

In Ethiopia we have assisted over 800,000 people as part of the drought response. We have provided water in 21 districts including in displacement camps. We have rehabilitated 56 boreholes and drilled 14 new ones. 209,000 people have also benefited from cash assistance from Oxfam.

Oxfam has assisted 140,000 people in Somaliland with safe and clean water.

In Kenya, we have reached 660,000 people with assistance in Turkana and Wajir. This includes water to over 600,000 people and 36,000 people have received cash.

Donate to the Famine and Hunger Relief Fund.


Yemen

Photo: Moayed Al-Shaybani/Oxfam
This young girl and her family were displaced by Yemen’s conflict and now lack income. Her father, Ahmed Shwaa, who was a farmer before the war, tells Oxfam: “All that matters is to live in peace. But now, we cannot provide food for our family and we cannot live in peace.” Photo: Moayed Al-Shaybani/Oxfam

Almost three million people in Yemen have been forced to flee their homes due to bombing and fighting. 22 million people – 75 percent of Yemen population – are in need of emergency aid. 17 million Yemenis are suffering from food insecurity and malnutrition, including 8 million who are now on the brink of famine. Yemen is also the world’s worst ever recorded cholera outbreak, with over 1 million reported cases to date.

Oxfam has reached more than 1.5 million people with water and sanitation services, cash assistance and food vouchers. In response to the Cholera outbreak, Oxfam has provided water and sanitation assistance to more than 430,000 people in an effort to prevent and contain the disease.

Donate to the Famine and Hunger Relief Fund.


How is Oxfam responding?

Countries impacted by the food crisis.

Oxfam is on the ground, reaching the most affected with the emergency help they need to survive. We are:

  • Working with local partner organizations who provide emergency food distributions and work with vulnerable people to produce their own food and other income.
  • Providing emergency water and sanitation, to stop the spread of diseases like cholera and diarrhea.
  • Providing cash and vouchers so people can purchase the food they need to survive
  • Trucking in urgently needed water to the worst drought affected areas
  • Constructing showers and toilets for those who have been forced to flee their homes

We can stop the worst from happening. You can save lives by supporting Oxfam’s work providing emergency help to those who need it most.

Call Oxfam or Give Online


Learn more:

Media Release: Oxfam Canada thanks Canadians for their generosity to help fight famine, August 17, 2017
Report: PDF icon hunger_and_famine_crises_update_-_june_2017.pdf
Media Release: Oxfam Canada welcomes Government relief fund, hopes Canadians will join the fight against famine now to double the impact of their donations, May 29,2017
Media Release: As world faces unprecedented famine threat, G7 should pay up and push for peaceMay 24, 2017
Blog: Drought in East Africa: "If the rains don't come, none of us will survive", April 27, 2017
Media Release: Threat of four famines in 2017 “a catastrophic betrayal of our common humanity” February 24, 2017
Media Release: Famine in South Sudan reflects international failure, Oxfam, February 21, 2017


Page last updated September, 2018