January 7, 2013
Top humanitarian priorities for 2013
Ongoing humanitarian crises in 16 countries leave some 51 million people suffering.
The United Nations has released a list of the world’s top current humanitarian crises.
Listed below are the countries that require the most cash to address their humanitarian emergencies, according to the UN and aid agencies. (*Indicates where World Vision operates child-focused programs to reduce poverty.)
1. Somalia* ($1.3 billion)
A good harvest at the start of 2012 helped end famine in southern Somalia, but about 3.8 million people still need life-saving assistance. More than 235,000 children under age 5 are acutely malnourished.
2. South Sudan* ($1.15 billion)
In 2012, South Sudan experienced a huge economic shock following a shutdown of its oil production. Difficulties have been compounded by poor harvests, sporadic fighting with Sudan, and internal conflicts that have displaced thousands. Meanwhile, hundreds of thousands have returned to the newly independent country, putting a strain on limited resources.
3. Sudan* ($983 million)
Ongoing conflict in Sudan has left millions vulnerable after being forced to flee violence. Regular upheavals have disrupted food supplies and limited access to clean water and healthcare. The most severely affected area is Darfur, where 3.4 million people require humanitarian aid.
4. Democratic Republic of Congo* ($893 million)
The DRC continues to suffer high levels of armed violence, resulting in the displacement of 2.6 million people. Vulnerable populations face looting, rape, unsanitary conditions, worsening levels of malnutrition, and epidemics of measles, cholera, and malaria.
5. Kenya* ($743 million)
Improved rains have mitigated protracted drought conditions, but 2.1 million people still face food shortages due to poor harvests. Kenya also struggles to cope with more than 670,000 refugees from South Sudan and Somalia.
6. Yemen ($716 million)
About 250,000 people were displaced during fighting between government forces and militants in 2011 and 2012. The violence added to the distress of a country where nearly 1 million Yemeni girls and boys under age 5 suffer from acute malnutrition; 13 million lack access to safe water; and 10.5 million face uncertain food supplies.
7. Chad* ($501 million)
Favorable rain patterns have helped Chad recover from drought, and agricultural production is expected to improve in 2013. Now the challenge is to ensure the 1.8 million people who suffered food insecurity in 2012 receive the support needed to make a full recovery and consolidate recent gains.
8. Afghanistan* ($471 million)
Afghanistan has high rates of malnutrition and low life expectancy. Armed conflict prevails in much of the country, exacerbating chronic poverty and causing people to flee fighting. Meanwhile, Afghanistan struggles to provide for the largest population of returnee refugees in the world — 5.7 million people.
UN seeking aid to address calamities
The United Nations will seek $8.5 billion from governments and major donors in 2013 to assist 51 million people suffering from ongoing humanitarian crises in 16 countries.
The aid will include the provision of food, shelter, clean water, and other basic necessities to those suffering from the effects of war and natural disasters. Funding will also help struggling communities to rebuild and become more resilient in the event of future calamities.
Included in the UN appeal are the countries listed above, as well as the Palestinian territories*, Mali*, Niger*, Mauritania*, Burkina Faso, Zimbabwe*, Central African Republic, and the Philippines*.
The 2013 appeal for Mali is at $370 million, up from $215 million for 2012. Mauritania’s 2013 appeal, at $180 million, is nearly double that of the year before. Both countries face severe hunger and nutrition crises. More than 100,000 children in Mauritania suffer from malnutrition.
The request for funds is part of the UN’s Consolidated Appeal Process (CAP), whereby 520 international aid organizations — including World Vision — collaborate to calculate the cost of response plans for the coming year.
How you can help
Pray for children and families suffering from humanitarian crisises. Pray for effective interventions that will save lives and for long-term solutions to address hunger, poverty, and disease in these struggling countries.
Make a one-time donation to help provide life-saving food and care. You can help provide life-saving food, agricultural support, livestock, clean water, medicines, and other essential care to hungry children and families around the world. And because of grant funds and donated goods, your gift multiplies five times in impact to help save lives.