The European Union is mobilizing €191.3 million to address the many humanitarian crises in Africa’s Sahel region. The Sahel is experiencing its worst food and nutrition crisis since 2013 while it is also facing continued instability and insecurity. To help alleviate the dire situation, the Commission announced a generous humanitarian aid package.
“There is no time to waste with many affected by a worsening food security crisis in the Sahel. Our EU aid will throw a lifeline to the most vulnerable. Our new support aims to reach more than 1.1 million people in need of emergency food assistance while supporting treatment to over 650,000 severely malnourished children,” commented Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management Christos Stylianides.
The €191.3 million package will be redistributed amongst eight countries: Burkina Faso (€11.1 million), Chad (€40.2 million), Cameroon (€13.9 million), Mali (€35.3 million), Mauritania (€11.4 million), Niger (€32.2 million), Nigeria (€35.3 million), and Senegal (€1 million). On top of this aid, regional funds amounting to €10.8 million will be allocated as well. The new financial package will also cover disaster risk reduction initiatives that can support populations in preparing themselves for natural hazards.
The EU is one of the biggest aid donors to the Sahel. Last year, it allocated more than €240 million in humanitarian assistance to the people of the region, providing food, treatment for malnourished children, vulnerable households, health care, water, shelter, sanitation and protection. The humanitarian situation in the Sahel is extremely vulnerable and fragile. Almost 12 million people across the region are in need of immediate food assistance to avoid acute hunger and malnutrition. Women and children are hit the hardest, with almost 4 million children – a 20% increase compared to 2017 – being at risk of malnutrition.