More than a million Somalis remain 'in crisis': WFP

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Relief food at a WFP warehouse in Mogadishu, Somalia. Credit: IRIN/Kate Holt

Humanitarian assistance is still vital in Somalia because the gains made in food security and nutrition are still fragile.

The World Food Programme-WFP says it continues to shift from emergency assistance toward programmes that help the most vulnerable Somalis strengthen their ability to cope with droughts and floods.

Spokesperson Elizabeth Byers says the number of people who remain "in crisis" now stands at just over 1 million.

“ There have been significant improvements since the crisis in 2011 but we still need to help the most vulnerable people. There are approximately 1 million people who need vital assistance and who are still in crisis now. Of course, the number of people who remain in crisis is down from the 3.7 million in August 2011, or the 2.1 million in 2012. But still we need to support these 1 million people because it's so fragile, they might lose all the gain if we w don't keep the effort and if we don't monitor the situation.”

Byers explains that "In crisis" means households that have significant food consumption gaps with high or above usual acute malnutrition or that they can only provide food for their families through irreversible coping strategies such as selling assets.

She says the bulk of these people are located in Central Somalia and remain extremely vulnerable and could easily be pushed into crisis by one external shock.

Donn Bobb, United Nations.

Duration: 1’43″

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