Drought in the Horn of Africa: Progress report on the rapid response and mitigation plan to avert a humanitarian catastrophe (January – December 2022)


At a glance

Drought-affected countries: Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia and to a lesser extent Djibouti

Funding received (2022): USD 120 million

Beneficiaries reached: +3.6 million people

Crop outcome: 600 000 people with cereal availability for one year

Nutrition outcome: +2.7 million children with access to a cup of milk each day for six months

The Horn of Africa continues to face its worst drought in 40 years, and this right after the region faced the worst desert locust upsurge in 70 years.

As of December 2022, some 22 million people were expected to be facing high levels of acute food insecurity (Integrated Food Security Phase Classification [IPC] Phase 3 or above) in drought-affected areas of Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia, including 2.7 million people in Emergency (IPC Phase 4) in Djibouti, Kenya and Somalia and 214 050 people in Catastrophe (IPC Phase 5) in Somalia (FSNAU, 2022; IPC, 2022a, 2022b; WFP, 2022). Overall, 7.46 million children under five years of age are estimated to be facing acute malnutrition, including 1.85 million facing severe malnutrition (FEWS NET, 2022a).

Against its Revised rapid response and mitigation plan to avert a humanitarian catastrophe (January–December 2022) (FAO, 2022), FAO mobilized USD 110.5 million and reprogrammed USD 9.5 million from pre-existing projects in 2022. This enabled the Organization to provide essential livelihoods-based support to 589 000 households (over 3.6 million people) in Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia. No funding has been received for Djibouti.

Component 1. Saving lives by increasing immediate food access: FAO and implementing partners reached over 168 700 households (1 012 200 people) with cash transfers, including cash+, enabling recipients to access food to meet their needs for up to 90 days.

Component 2. Safeguarding livelihoods and self-reliance: Under this component, FAO and implementing partners reached 419 000 households – equivalent to over 2.5 million direct beneficiaries – with livelihood packages (including inputs, animal health interventions, slaughter-destocking, water access and fisheries), while ensuring not to double count beneficiaries of cash+ interventions.

Moreover, the outcomes of these interventions go beyond the benefits to its direct recipients. The indirect benefits are calculated as follows:

600 000 people with adequate cereal availability to meet their food consumption needs for an entire year; and

over 2.7 million children accessing one cup of milk each day for at least six months.

Component 3. Information for action through evidence and coordination: FAO fulfilled its Food Security Cluster co-lead role in Ethiopia and Somalia and provided support to the Government of Kenya upon request. Furthermore, FAO played an active role at country and regional levels on food security analyses. Drought-related advocacy took place at country, subregional and global levels including through field visits of senior management (Deputy Director-General mission to Kenya in February 2022 and Emergency and Resilience Director mission to Somalia in July 2022 and to Ethiopia in November 2022).

Source: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations