Fighting Famine

Fighting Famine

Photo: AFP PHOTO /

Tens of millions of people are in need of humanitarian assistance as a result of man-made crises in South Sudan, Nigeria, and Yemen - all of which are driven by violent conflict - and Somalia, where ongoing conflict is compounding the effects of severe and prolonged drought. These crises are forcing people to flee within and beyond their country borders, disrupting agricultural production and livelihoods, and severing families from their social support systems. Ongoing violence - including deliberate attacks on civilians and relief workers - continues to prevent aid from reaching those most in need.

The United States is one of the largest donors of humanitarian assistance in all four crises. The assistance we provide includes: emergency food and nutrition assistance, safe drinking water, life-saving medical care, and shelter for those who have been displaced, both internally and as refugees, as well as protection for civilians. The United States is also supporting health, sanitation and hygiene services to help stop the spread of preventable disease - a leading cause of death during food crises.

Our assistance represents the best of America's generosity and goodwill, while improving our national security by strengthening relationships with nations and people around the world. We will continue to work with our international and local partners to provide the life-saving aid needed to avert famine and to support surrounding countries, mitigating the impact of these crises.

Last updated: September 25, 2017

September 25, 2017

Post-gu seasonal assessments indicate that while Famine—IPC 5—levels of acute food insecurity have been averted in Somalia, the risk of Famine persists through December for internally displaced persons (IDPs) and other vulnerable populations in the worst-affected areas of Somalia.4 In addition, an estimated 3.1 million people are expected to face Crisis—IPC 3—or Emergency—IPC 4—levels of acute food insecurity through December, with an estimated 6.2 million people likely to require humanitarian assistance, according to the USAID-funded Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET) and Food Security and Nutrition Analysis Unit–Somalia (FSNAU).

September 25, 2017

The United States is deeply concerned about the risk of famine in northeastern Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan and Yemen. We are the single largest donor of humanitarian assistance for these countries, providing lifesaving aid to avert famine and help people in need. U.S. assistance includes emergency food, nutrition, water, shelter, healthcare, sanitation, hygiene services and protection. The United States also provides humanitarian assistance to refugees from these four countries. On September 21, on the margins of the 72nd United National General Assembly, USAID Administrator Mark Green announced more than $575 million in additional U.S. humanitarian assistance for the four countries at risk of famine.

September 22, 2017

During the September 18–22 UN General Assembly in New York, USAID Administrator Green announced nearly $54 million in additional FY 2017 funding for the humanitarian response in Nigeria, including nearly $28.9 million in USAID/OFDA funding, more than $22.7 million in USAID/FFP funding, and $2.4 million in State/PRM funding.

September 15, 2017

Health actors, including U.S Government (USG) partners, continue to scale up health and water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) activities in response to the cholera outbreak in northeastern Nigeria’s Borno State. Between mid-August and September 13, health authorities recorded more than 1,900 suspected and confirmed cases, including 44 associated deaths, in Borno’s capital city of Maiduguri and Dikwa and Monguno local government areas (LGAs), according to the Borno State Ministry of Health (SMoH).

September 11, 2017

As of September 7, health agencies had recorded more than 629,000 suspected cholera cases and 2,061 related deaths since the outbreak resurged in late April, according to USAID/OFDA partner the UN World Health Organization (WHO). While the number of weekly cholera cases in Yemen declined between early July and mid-August, WHO reported a slight increase in the total number of weekly cases during the weeks of August 14 and August 21—the first increase in approximately six weeks

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