Sahel Food Crisis

A woman feeds nutritional porridge to her son, in the health centre in Secteur (Sector) 1, a division of Fada N’gourma, the capital of Est Region.
UNICEF/NYHQ2012-0245/OLIVIER ASSELIN

Children suffer from severe acute malnutrition each year in the Sahel countries — Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, Niger and Senegal 

"Malnutrition silently stalks children across the Sahel, and 2018 has been particularly severe," said Marie-Pierre Poirier, UNICEF Regional Director for West and Central Africa. "We have been able to deliver the supplies and medicines these children need to survive, but equally important are investments in preventive measures and early detection to stop children from getting sick in the first place. This was the shift we implemented this year and it produced encouraging results." 

Malnutrition chronically reaches emergency levels in pockets of the Sahel because of multiple factors including land and crop degradation, periodic droughts and weather-related shocks, poverty, limited access to basic food staples and essential services and population growth. 

UNICEF is working with local governments in Sahel countries to prevent malnutrition through the promotion of good feeding practices and use of local food resources, improved health and other social services. 

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