Horn of Africa Crisis situation report 10

22 September 2011 

Situation overview

GENERAL

According to FEWS NET, emergency levels of food insecurity persist due to high food prices, limited access to water, low milk availability, and insufficient humanitarian response. Meteorologists expect average rains in drought-stricken areas of the Horn of Africa during the upcoming short rain season. Potential enhanced rainfall is however increasing concerns in vulnerable areas prone to floods. Contingency plans are therefore needed to both mitigate the negative effects and at the same time exploit the positive effects of the rains.

SOMALIA

  • A total of 57,840 households received monthly food rations, benefitting approximately 347,040 people through blanket supplementary feeding and 29,462 households have benefited from the wet feeding programme.
  • Emergency vaccinations completed in Gedo and Bakool reached 37,684 children (9 months to 15 years) with measles vaccinations; 16,616 children (0-59 months) with OPV vaccinations; 13,197 children (12-59 months) with de-worming; and 13,960 children (6-59 months) with vitamin A.
  • UNICEF, through its partners facilitated enrolment of 321,434 children (48 per cent girls) in 1,379 schools in all of central south zone.
  • A total of 225 Child Friendly Spaces have been set up and are now operational, benefiting 24,427 children in IDP camps and host communities in famine affected regions with education, recreation, protection, health and water and sanitation services.

ETHIOPIA

Drought Situation

  • Continued increase in suspected Acute Watery Diarrhoea (AWD) cases remains a major concern. The past week witnessed the highest number of reported cases since the onset of the outbreak in August. UNICEF is supporting the regional authorities to mobilize additional medical staff, mobile health teams and drugs to the affected locations. This has helped to ensure good case management and reduce case fatality rates to below threshold level. An additional Case Treatment Centre (CTC) has also been established.
  • Therapeutic Feeding Programmes (TFP) admission figures for August totaled 24,055 new severe acutely malnourished admissions with a 71.7 per cent reporting rate and 86.9 per cent cure rate. This is a 20 per cent decrease from the July admissions figure (29,360).

Somali Refugee Situation

  • As of 19 September 2011, the total number of Somali refugee population in the four Dollo Ado camps and the transit center stands at 123,749. So far in September, the average number of new arrivals is 160.
  • The mortality rates in Dollo Ado camps remain a concern. The latest data indicate a significant improvement in Kobe with a reduction of CMR from 2.1 per 10,000 day in week 36 to 1.1 per 10,000 in week 37. The under 5 mortality rate has also improved, with a decrease from 8.8 to 4.4 during the same period.
  • The number of measles cases continues to decline while partners wait for the final decision of the Federal Ministry of Health on launching a supplementary measles campaign to target adults up to 30 years of age.
  • Both mobile health and nutrition teams (MHNT) are working in Kobe refugee camps. Both teams have visited 308 households providing health and nutrition services including health education, hygiene and sanitation promotion.

Sudanese Refugee Situation (Blue Nile State)

  • The influx of Sudanese refuges seems to have slowed down during the past week. As of mid-September, some 11,900 Sudanese refugees have been registered in Benishangul Gumuz. Many Sudanese prefer not to be registered as refugees and continue to move in and out of Ethiopia since the situation in Sudan remains tense.
  • UNICEF has provided six MHNTs to respond to the additional health needs in locations with large Sudanese refugee concentrations.

KENYA

Drought-Affected Areas

  • An increasing concern for partners in the WASH Cluster is the lack of information on the sustainability of water resources in drought affected areas. There exists the possibility of recharge rates for boreholes being exceeded and open water sources utilized for water trucking running dry.

Dadaab Refugee Camps

  • Global Acute Malnutrition and Severe Acute Malnutrition are 38.3% (32.1-44.8) and 18.8% (14.7-23.6) respectively. This indicates that 4 in every 10 under-five children are acutely malnourished, while 2 in 10 are severely malnourished.
  • Anaemia prevalence among children 6-59 months in the three refugee camps is above 40% and hence of public health significance. More than 50% of children 6-23 months suffer from anaemia.
  • One case of cholera was confirmed last week in Ifo Camp in an eight month-old infant who died due to complications and late reporting for treatment.

Unicef's response

NUTRITION

In Kenya, Somalia, Ethiopia and Djibouti, UNICEF has developed comprehensive programmatic responses covering both curative and preventive aspects of nutrition, as follows:

  • Treatment of severe and moderate acute malnutrition, including stabilization centres (SC), outpatient treatment programs (OTP) and targeted supplementary feeding programs (TSFP) for moderate cases.
  • Prevention of acute malnutrition, including blanket supplementary feeding, wet feeding (prepared meals), micronutrient interventions, and infant and young child feeding activities.

Other measures include:

  • Engage in blanket supplementary feeding programmes, not only for children under the age of 2, but including older children and even food packages for the whole family, complementary to WFP interventions.
  • Include older children (above 5 years of age) in the management of acute malnutrition programmes.
  • Set up wet feeding at the border in Somalia before refugees cross the border, then inside Kenya and Ethiopia, before they reach the reception centres, using different points for services to provide support throughout their displacement.