A desperate and largely unknown humanitarian crisis is deteriorating in the Lake Chad Basin region of West Africa, forcing millions of people to flee their homes and leaving millions more in need of humanitarian assistance. Oxfam is providing life-saving support but help is urgently needed to prevent the crisis turning into a catastrophe.
The 2011 drought across the Horn of Africa was, in some places, the worst to hit the region for 60 years. Three countries were hit by the drought: Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia.
Early in July 2011, Oxfam launched a massive public appeal for funds – the largest in its history – across several countries. Oxfam began to scale up rapidly, recruiting local staff, sending international experts to support them, and planning large-scale emergency activities with local partner organizations. Despite a difficult economic climate, the public responded very generously to the appeal, and the sustained media attention meant that donations continued to come in for several months after the initial launch. Oxfam raised a total of $118.8 million for this emergency, of which almost one-third came from members of the public.
This report describes what Oxfam and its partners have achieved since July 2011, and also looks at what needs to be done in the future, both to help people recover from this particular drought and to increase their resilience to rain failures – which will certainly occur again. Given the very different country contexts in which Oxfam has been operating, the report is split into three sections summarizing what it has done (directly and through local partners) in Somalia, Kenya, and Ethiopia.
The report is intended to account to the individuals, governments, and institutions that gave so generously to Oxfam’s Horn of Africa appeal, as well as to the organization’s partners, allies, volunteers, and staff.