West Africa is struck by a devastating food crisis - the third within less than a decade! Activista the Gambia are taking part in the rapid response to the crisis - follow their progress right here.
Activista is active in several countries in West Africa and a number of these are suffering, directly and indirectly, from the food crisis across the region. Parts of Nigeria and Ghana have been affected but currently the hardest hit countries in which ActionAid works are The Gambia and Senegal.
Communities have had little time to recover from the last crisis in 2010 — their savings and livestock herds remain depleted. Crop yields are low and food prices are abnormally high, heightening food insecurity. When farmers are affected, the whole nation is affected!
The crisis currently being experienced in these two countries is a result of widespread crop failure mainly caused by inadequate and erratic rains. This problem is aggravated by rising food prices which, on average, have climbed to is about 25% above last year’s prices. The UN estimates that over 700,000 people (over 40% of the Gambian population) have been affected across the country. In Senegal, over 850,000 people are going hungry.
The situation is likely to get much worse in the coming months, especially if the coming rains are poor. It’s feared a lack of seed for the next planting season will make the crisis even worse. It is also likely that water for both human and animal consumption will become scarce in the worst hit areas.
What we're doing
In The Gambia, ActionAid has provided food supplies for over 3,000 people in the North Bank and Central River regions through the local partners. We're also providing food and water for livestock, and supporting people with seeds and farm tools. For more info about ActionAids work on the food crisis visit this link.
Activista has been part of the rapid assessment team, surveying the needs of the drought struck villagers and are now working to find ways to raise money for the response work.