Ethiopia: EU Contributes 2 Million Euros to Ethiopia to Support Locust Affected Communities

The European Union (EU) has provided two million Euros) to UNICEF to support vulnerable communities affected by desert locusts in various states.

The funding which is provided for Afar, Amhara, Oromia, Somali and Tigray states is being made available through the EU's Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations Directorate-General (ECHO).

Due to the combined effects of desert locusts, climate change and the secondary impacts of COVID-19, UNICEF and its nutrition partners anticipated that the number of children who needs treatment for severe acute malnutrition this year would rise by 24 percent.

To this effect, the number of targeted children for treatment has increased from the 460,000 children initially planned (including 16,000 refugees) to 570,000 children (of whom 18,400 are refugees).

"Children are always mostly affected when livelihoods are eroded and access to food and adequate nutrition becomes a challenge," says UNICEF Representative Adele Khodr. "We are, therefore, immensely grateful to the European Union for providing this funding at this critical time. It will enable us to scale up our nutrition interventions and ensure that life-saving treatment reaches the dramatically increasing number of children in need across Ethiopia."

With the first EU funding received in May 2020, UNICEF was able to procure and distribute 30,000 cartons of Ready-to-Use Therapeutic Food for treating 30,000 severely malnourished children in Afar, Somali and Oromia states.

"As one of the largest humanitarian donors in the world, the EU is committed to support efforts to address urgent humanitarian needs in Ethiopia" says Yassine Gaba, the Head of the EU Humanitarian Aid's office in Ethiopia. "Children are highly vulnerable in times of natural and man-made disasters, and with European help and solidarity, I am confident that UNICEF will help address some of the most pressing needs."

This latest funding will enable UNICEF to procure therapeutic foods and associated essential medicines to treat an additional 60,000 severely malnourished children. The grant will also support the warehousing and transportation of malnutrition treatment supplies to ensure they reach the last mile, especially in hard-to-reach areas.

UNICEF will also provide meals to support 3,000 caregivers of children admitted to stabilization centers.

EU provided 2.4 million Euros to UNICEF to address the nutrition impact of multiple hazards such as climate-induced recurrent droughts, disease outbreaks, and internal displacements in Afar, Somali and Oromia states in May 2020, it was learnt.

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