Responding to the hunger crisis in Zambia

Self Help AfricaAgriculture & Nutrition, Climate Change, News, Zambia

The unseasonal drought in Zambia has plunged the country into crisis. Maize production has declined dramatically, leaving tens of thousands of families hungry, forced to ration their households to just a single meal a day.

Self Help Africa are currently working in some areas that have been severely affected by the hunger situation. This includes the Southern province, where we are implementing the Protecting and Restoring the Environment and Supporting the Emergence of a Resilient and Vibrant Economy (PRESERVE) in Kafue Sub-basin.

PRESERVE is working with 3,000 households, in a region where 90% of the community depends on the wetland eco-system for their livelihoods. With the drought drying up wetlands, Self Help Africa’s traditional interventions like horticulture and winter farming have been affected, making the hunger situation worse.

This emergency hunger situation has made a more urgent intervention necessary. In response to this crisis, Self Help Africa’s supporters have stepped up and are allowing us to respond to the immediate needs of families affected. Life-saving distributions of basic staple foods (mealie meal) will be distributed to over 3,000 households, alongside emergency cash transfers to allow families to buy the food they need to survive.

Self Help Africa Humanitarian Director Steve Langdon said that the intervention would help close to 18,000 people in total. The first distribution took place in late December, with further food aid intervention to take place in January and February 2020, when field crops including green maize, pumpkins and beans will start maturing.