DEC East Africa Crisis Appeal reaches £44 million

04/08/2011

The Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) appeal for more than 12 million people in East Africa in desperate need of humanitarian aid because of severe drought now stands at £44 million.
 
Praising the generosity of the British public DEC Chief Executive Brendan Gormley said today: ‘To raise this amount in just over three weeks is a fantastic achievement. The outpouring of support and concern for those suffering in this crisis is truly inspiring.
 
‘One anonymous benefactor has offered several thousand pounds that he had been saving for a dream holiday to Disneyland and Graceland. 
 
‘In the accompanying note he said: ‘I am by no means rich, but sometimes you have to think of others and get things in the right perspective. People should not starve, especially children.’ It was a wonderful gesture.’
 
While praising the generosity of such respondents to the appeal, Mr Gormley repeated his call for foreign governments to play a bigger role in providing aid. 
 
‘The UN appeal for countries covered by the DEC appeal, including South Sudan, stand at just over $3bn. Less than half that has been met, ‘ said Mr Gormley 
 
‘Meanwhile, the crisis is escalating with the UN declaring three more regions in Somalia to be suffering from famine, and expressing fears the crisis may also spread to northern Uganda, where more than half a million people already face food insecurity.’ 
 
‘Foreign governments have got to dig deep to prevent this tragedy getting rapidly worse.’ 
 
The DEC appeal covers Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, and the newly-formed Republic of South Sudan, where the need for food, water and emergency healthcare is acute.
 
The worst drought in 60 years in parts of East Africa has devastated cattle and crops, with problems expected to be compounded by a poor coming harvest.