OVER €100,000 has been raised from the people of Limerick to date as part of Concern’s appeal for the famine-stricken regions around the Horn of Africa.
The public, said Concern Worldwide’s overseas director Paul O’Brien, had “once again been magnificent in responding to this emergency”.
“These funds have allowed us to reach over half a million people with basic supplies including food, water and cash.”
“We cannot thank the people of Limerick enough for their support to date,” added Mr O’Brien, “the support that we have received has enabled us to scale up our responses”.
But confirmation from the United Nations that three new areas of Somalia are now facing famine means “the needs of this humanitarian catastrophe are far from being met,”, Mr O’Brien said, and “the situation will continue to get worse before it gets better”. Almost four million people in Somalia, half the population - now “need life-saving assistance” and child mortality rates continue to soar.
The crisis is not confined to Somalia as over 1500 refugees a day spill across the Kenyan border into the world’s largest refugee camp at Dadaab. Food prices in Kenya are skyrocketing and donations collected from Limerick are paying for food vouchers in the slums of Nairobi.
Minister of State for Trade and Development Jan O’Sullivan confirmed that the government was arranging another airlift of tents and other humanitarian supplies for Dadaab, bringing to €8.2 million the total Irish Aid has committed to the region to date. The latest shipment would provide “shelter and security to up to 5,000 people,” said the Limerick TD.
Donations to Concern can be made over the phone on 1850 410 510 or online at www.concern.net/drought