EASTERN AND SOUTHERN AFRICA Ethiopia
Asiya Abdu, pregnant with her fifth child, stands in the home she shares with 20 family members, in Undada Village. Poverty, inadequate basic services and recurrent droughts and floods continue to threaten the welfare of children and women.
Children and women in crisis
Emergency conditions are all too familiar to many families in Ethiopia. In 2010, flooding affected nearly 1 million people across several regions.1 Periodic shocks such as droughts and heavy rains can add immediate crisis to chronic difficulties linked to high poverty levels, dependence on rain-fed agriculture, low availability of safe drinking water, poor hygiene and sanitation, and inadequate disease surveillance. As a result, children and women, especially pregnant women and children with poor nutritional status, are at higher risk of death and disease.
Meeting urgent needs and building resilience in 2011
In 2011, UNICEF will work with the Government of Ethiopia, other UN agencies, NGOs and communities to respond to the needs of more than 7 million people, including 6 million children who live in areas vulnerable to natural disasters and political tensions – including the Afar, Amhara, Gambella, Oromiya, Somali, Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples (SNNP) and Tigray regions. UNICEF continues to lead the WASH and nutrition clusters, the child protection sub-cluster and co-leads the education cluster. In addition, since February 2004, UNICEF has supported the Government’s emergency nutrition coordination unit.
- Six million children will be healthier because they will receive a series of essential child survival interventions, including nutritional screening and referral (with management of severe acute malnutrition for 210,000 children), vitamin A supplementation and deworming.
- 600,000 pregnant and lactating women will receive nutritional screening, and those who are undernourished will be referred for supplementary feeding.
- Many rural and remote communities lack ready access to essential prevention and care. Mobile health teams will bring such services to 2 million people in Somali region, 90,000 people in Afar region and 302,000 people in the South Omo zone of the SNNP region.
- Whether too much rain or not enough, both put access to safe water for drinking, hygiene and sanitation at risk. UNICEF will help 480,000 people in drought- and flood-affected areas maintain access to safe water.
- UNICEF will ensure that 210,000 children in flood- and conflict-affected areas can attend child-friendly learning spaces, especially in the Afar, Amhara, Gambella, Oromiya, Somali, SNNP and Tigray regions.
- At-risk children are especially vulnerable during times of natural disaster or other upheaval. UNICEF will ensure that child protection structures and mechanisms are in place to prevent and respond to the situation of at least 15,000 out of an estimated 40,000 vulnerable children in the worst-affected regions of Gambella and Somali, including the provision of child-focused social welfare services; additionally, survivors of gender-based violence will be able to tap into a network of necessary services through a stronger referral system.
Humanitarian funding at work: Highlights from 2010
According to the mid-2010 review, an estimated US$68,660,000 was needed for UNICEF’s humanitarian activities in Ethiopia. As of October 2010, a total of US$22,973,851, or 33 per cent of the revised request, had been received. An additional US$21,326,000 carried forward from 2009 was also programmed. One key achievement of 2010 was a 44 per cent increase over 2009 in the number of local health posts able to treat children with severe acute malnutrition on an outpatient basis. More than 760,000 people affected by floods used clean water made possible by household treatment chemicals and safe water receptacles or by providing water through delivery in tankers, and 67,000 children continued with their education in temporary learning spaces.
Funding requirements for 2011
UNICEF is requesting US$57,416,000 for Ethiopia. This is almost US$11 million less than the 2010 request due to the improved harvest season of 2010 and integration of the emergency nutrition strategy (Enhanced Outreach Strategy) in non-food-insecure areas into regular nutrition programming. However, the precarious welfare of women and children in the chronically food-insecure regions of Ethiopia means that full funding is crucial.
1 Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Disaster Risk Management and Food Security Sector, ‘Flood Response Plan’, Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, Addis Ababa, September 2010, p. 4.
UNICEF Emergency Needs for 2011 (in US dollars) Total $57,416,000