US announces $257m additional humanitarian aid to Somalia

The US government is providing nearly $257m in additional humanitarian assistance in Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 to help the people of the Federal Republic of Somalia.

Deputy Assistant Administrator for Africa for the US Agency for International Development (USAID) Diana Putman said in a statement said that the assistance will address life-threatening hunger and acute malnutrition and provide safe water, emergency health care, education, and protection to people affected by ongoing conflict and recurrent drought inside Somalia, and to Somali refugees in neighboring countries.

The US is the largest donor of humanitarian assistance in Somalia, and this latest announcement brings the total contributed by the American people in FY 2019 for Somalia to nearly $498m.

Somalia recently experienced its worst harvest in 25 years, and up to 2.1 million people there could face life-threatening hunger by December of this year, according to the latest estimates. Additionally, approximately 2.6 million people – or one in five Somalis – are internally displaced; while more than 730,000 are seeking refuge in neighbouring countries.

The US government remains concerned about the ongoing crisis in Somalia and the lack of sufficient humanitarian funds to address it. Large-scale assistance is urgent to prevent conditions in Somalia from worsening.

The US encourages other donors to increase their contributions to address Somalia’s critical humanitarian needs, and to help the most-vulnerable Somalis build resilience to withstand future shocks.

The United Nations estimates that an additional $500m in humanitarian funding is needed in Somalia through December 2019.