ActionAid is a global movement of people working together to further human rights and defeat poverty for all.

96,000 receive food as ActionAid scales up drought response

ActionAid is actively responding to the drought disaster in Kenya through various quick interventions.

In the last two weeks, the organization delivered food to 96,000 people, most of who are in the worst affected counties.

The Government of Kenya declared the drought a national disaster in February and called on international support in order to deliver humanitarian services to 2.7 million people. ActionAid works in 10 out of the 15 most affected counties with an estimated population of 1.5 million people.

The food that ActionAid is providing includes cereals, pulses and vegetable oil and is being distributed in the counties of Isiolo, Kilifi, West Pokot and Garissa. The food is provided to the most vulnerable families through what is called asset creation initiative, where beneficiaries are given some kind of work that builds assets like roads for their communities.

File 37059Women sharing Food delivered by ActionAid - Isiolo, Kenya. Photo: John Kisimir

“What is needed is urgent and appropriate action to reverse the food shortage situation. We must avoid a serious humanitarian catastrophe,” said Clement Chesire, ActionAid Emergencies Response Manager.

As a result of the drought, food prices in the affected regions in Kenya have increased by 20% - 30% above the long term average. Livestock bodily conditions have deteriorated due to lack of pasture and long watering distances. An estimated 80% of livestock in the arid and semi-arid regions have migrated to areas where they can find pasture thus instigating conflict over grazing areas between different ethnic communities.

File 37058A group of Women chat after receiving food, Isiolo - Kenya. Photo: John Kisimir

ActionAid’s drought response is encouraging women to take lead and organise their communities as well as be in charge of resources that are delivered by the organisation. As a result, the food that is delivered is managed by a women-led committee which is made up of people who live in the community. This is in line the organisation’s philosophy of encouraging women leadership in order to change gender power balance in communities. 

ActionAid is also delivering potable water to the affected communities as well as developing sustainable water structures like earth dams. It is also enhancing protection of women and girls who are trekking longer distances in search of water from sexual abuse.