While UNICEF's programs in the Horn of Africa have made some encouraging progress, millions of people across Somalia, Ethiopia, and Kenya still need humanitarian assistance. Children, in particular, are threatened by a combination of poverty, insecurity, malnutrition, and disease.
Somalia remains the worst-affected country in the Horn of Africa with the crisis compounded by ongoing conflict. Mortality and malnutrition rates remain extremely high. An estimated 870,000 people require lifesaving assistance and an additional 2.3 million people remain highly vulnerable.
In 2014, UNICEF is preparing to treat at least 135,000 children for severe acute malnutrition in Somalia and vaccinate nearly 2 million children against polio. In Ethiopia, 2.7 million children, mothers and pregnant women will be screened for malnutrition and referred to supplementary feeding programs. In Kenya, UNICEF will expand assistance to the flood of new refugees from South Sudan.
UNICEF needs a total of $215 million this year for its emergency relief and development programs in Somalia, Kenya and Ethiopia.
UNICEF's efforts will continue to focus on:
- Prevention and treatment of severe acute malnutrition;
- Prevention and response to major child illnesses including vaccination;
- Expansion of access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene;
- Providing livelihood opportunities that include improved food security and access to safe water; and
- Providing access to assets and safety nets that are responsive to seasonal factors and external shocks.