Independent on Sunday "Give A Day's Pay" appeal
Now Kenya stands on brink of its own famine
While the world focuses on Somalia and the starving refugees pouring across the Kenyan border, Kenya is on the brink of its own famine.
Some 3.5 million people there are at risk of malnutrition. In northern Kenya alone, some 385,000 children are malnourished, together with 90,000 pregnant and breast feeding mothers. These are the forgotten victims of the worst drought in more than half a century. There are no convoys of UN land cruisers; no expansive compound full of willing charities and no global sympathy.
Acute malnutrition in the remote Turkana district near the Ethiopian border already afflicts close to 38 per cent of the population: to declare a famine the number only needs to be over 30 per cent. But the region is so out of the way, so remote that it is hard to confirm the other terrible statistics that meet the international yardstick for famine. The government there insists no Kenyans have yet died in the drought, but the truth is they don’t know. In Turkana, even the death rate is uncertain.
Unlike Dadaab, the world's largest refugee camp, where some 400,000 victims of drought are concentrated in one place just nine hours drive from Nairobi, Kenya’s hungry are out of reach, scattered across an isolated region more than 24 hours away from the country’s capital. Some 37,000 people – most of whom are going hungry – spread across Kenya’s largest district: 35,000 square kilometres of harsh, inaccessible land.
Only brittle thorn bushes and graying Acacia trees grow. Emaciated figures - once proud herders of huge numbers of livestock - slump by the road trying to sell scraps of charcoal to passers by that never come. Their last resort in times of hunger used to be the berries on the trees, but these disappeared three months ago. Even the camels - unable to cope with the hunger and thirst - are dying now.
Give a day’s pay for Africa
The famine in the Horn of Africa is now claiming 250 lives a day – and it will get much worse without immediate, substantial aid. The Independent on Sunday is asking its readers, their friends and families to join with its senior staff and each pledge one day’s pay to charity. To join our “Give a day’s pay for Africa” campaign, go to independent.co.uk/giveadayspay All donations are welcome – to give £5, enough to buy high-energy food supplements to save five children a day, text INDY to 70000. Spread the word on Twitter, using the hashtag #Giveadayspay
* Read more from Emily Dugan in The Independent on Sunday this weekend.
- 2 Moscow voted the world's unfriendliest city
- 3 The excuses your boss is most likely to believe when you call in sick
- 4 I'm pansexual – here are the five biggest misconceptions about my sexuality
- 5 More than 11,000 Icelanders offer to house Syrian refugees to help European crisis
The excuses your boss is most likely to believe when you call in sick
Bono's group has made more money from Facebook investment than from all his music
Three-year-old ultra-Orthodox Jewish children told 'the non-Jews' are 'evil' in worksheet produced by London school
Wikipedia rocked by 'rogue editors' blackmail scam targeting small businesses and celebrities
More than 11,000 Icelanders offer to house Syrian refugees to help European crisis
Climate change: 2015 will be the hottest year on record 'by a mile', experts say
Jeremy Corbyn calls Osama bin Laden's killing a 'tragedy' - but was it taken out of context?
If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don’t change Europe’s attitude to refugees, what will?
If you're not already angry about the refugee crisis, here's a history lesson to remind you why you really should be
Theresa May says migrants should be banned from entering the UK unless they have jobs lined up
Tony Blair attacks Jeremy Corbyn's 'Alice In Wonderland' politics
£40000 - £42000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This IT support company has a n...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A works engineer is required in a progressive ...
£21000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Our client is seeking someone w...