A new contribution of US$2.2 million from the Government of Sweden to the Somalia Humanitarian Fund (SHF) has immediately been allocated by the Humanitarian Coordinator for Somalia, Mr. Peter de Clercq, to support humanitarian response to drought affected families.
“Sweden’s timely contribution to the Somalia Humanitarian Fund is greatly appreciated as it will help us boost response at a critical time to assist the most vulnerable communities affected by the prolonged drought conditions,” said Mr. de Clercq.
Some five million Somalis – more than 40 per cent of the country’s population – are currently in need of humanitarian assistance, including more than 320,000 children under age five who are acutely malnourished. The worsening drought conditions are putting a heavy burden on vulnerable communities across the country.
Mr. de Clercq allocated the new funds together with the Somalia Humanitarian Fund’s remaining balance of $1 million. The $3.2 million SHF allocation will allow humanitarian partners to deliver food, clean water and life-saving health, nutrition and sanitation and hygiene services.
Some $1 million will support food-insecure families in the areas most affected by drought with unconditional cash grants, emergency water and health support for livestock. Another $380,000 will go to health services, including critical primary health care and improved early warning surveillance and response systems. Water and sanitation programmes will be boosted with almost $1.1 million and some $800,000 will be used to procure life-saving nutrition supplies, including ready-to-use therapeutic food.
Mr. de Clercq warned that “more resources are urgently needed to help affected communities cope with the deteriorating situation before we descend even further towards a disastrous scenario.”
The new contribution brings Swedish funding to the Somalia Humanitarian Fund for 2016 to SEK 65 million ($7.5 million). With contributions from Australia, Denmark, Ireland, Germany, Netherlands, Switzerland and the United Kingdom, total funding made available by donors for the year come to more than $27 million.
Yesterday, the President of Somalia, in the presence of the National Leadership Forum members, launched an international appeal for drought relief.
The SHF is a multi-donor pooled mechanism that allocates funding for the most urgent and life-saving interventions in Somalia, as determined by humanitarian actors under the leadership of the Humanitarian Coordinator. Combining flexibility and strategic focus, the Fund ensures timely allocation and disbursement of resources, enables humanitarian action and strengthens coordination. SHF already allocated more than $25 million for critical humanitarian response in Somalia in 2016.