Using Small-Scale Adaptation Actions to Address the Food Crisis in the Horn of Africa

Going beyond Food Aid and Cash Transfers

By Richard Munang and Johnson N. Nkem
Published February 20, 2012

Abstract: The countries Kenya, Uganda, Somalia, Ethiopia and Djibouti are facing the worst food crisis of the 21st century as a result of devastating droughts. The crisis is causing starvation and leading to a lack of access to clean water and sanitation for over 12 million people. Not only are the direct drought effects endured now by the population, but they have weakened response capacity and created diminished prospects of ever achieving future water and food security. Over the coming decades, temperatures in this region will continue to rise and rainfall patterns will change. This will create major problems for food production and availability. Thus, building resilience in communities is indispensable as we adapt our farming systems to the challenges of climate change. This will require practical solutions that can build on processes involving adaptation to climate change. The lessons learned from the UN-led project in Uganda, demonstrate the value of small scale innovative interventions, carried out using democratic approaches to help support adaptation to climate change whilst progressing to achieve food security and chart a new Path to eliminate hunger. These lessons should be our guiding vision as we address the current droughts plaguing the Horn of East Africa and elsewhere.




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