Ethiopia Water
In Ethiopia, women and girls may have to walk hours or days to find clean drinking water for their households. USAID rehabilitates water points, supplying life-saving access to clean drinking water to drought-affected households.
Kelley Lynch

Key Developments

Sustained, large-scale emergency assistance—including food, nutrition, and water, sanitation, and hygiene interventions—is required during 2018 to prevent severe levels of food insecurity and acute malnutrition in Ethiopia, particularly in Somali Region, the Famine Early Warning Systems Network reported in early March.

On March 6, the U.S. Government announced an additional $110 million in humanitarian funding for the emergency response in Ethiopia. The new funding, comprising nearly $107 million from USAID's Office of Food for Peace and more than $3 million from USAID's Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance, will support emergency food assistance and life-saving nutrition and WASH interventions for conflict-and drought-affected populations across the country.

USAID's Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA) is responding to the complex emergency in the Horn of Africa region, including in EthiopiaKenya, and Somalia

Please visit our Horn of Africa web page for additional information.


Ethiopia is experiencing its second severe drought in less than two years. Insufficient rainfall during the 2017 rainy season has led to severe water shortages, catastrophic livestock losses, and failed crops throughout the country. The drought in southern Ethiopia comes as the country’s north and central highland communities continue to recover from a severe drought in 2016 triggered by multiple consecutive seasons of below-average rainfall and the effects of the 2015/2016 El Niño climatic event. In August 2017, the Government of Ethiopia estimated that 8.5 million people in the country would require humanitarian assistance through December, primarily due to increased drought-related needs in southern and southeastern parts of Ethiopia.

In addition to drought, populations across Ethiopia face other challenges that contribute to sustained humanitarian needs and an ongoing complex emergency—including above-average food prices, disease outbreaks, localized intercommunal conflict, seasonal flooding, and limited access to health and water, sanitation, and hygiene services.


Last updated: April 09, 2018

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