Today, Quadruple Olympic Champion Sir Mo Farah was named as an Ambassador for Save the Children. He has issued an urgent plea for donations to our East Africa Food Crisis Appeal:
— Sir Mo Farah (@Mo_Farah) 14 March 2017
Mo was born in Somalia, and moved to the UK when he was eight years old.
When he visited in 2011, Somalia was facing famine and he remembers how much it pained him to see children and families suffering.
Now, Somalia is again gripped by a devastating food crisis. And across East Africa, millions of people are at risk of hunger.
Families and children are suffering
Mo still has family in Somalia and Somaliland, some of them living in the worst affected areas.
He says, “I’m completely devastated – this shouldn’t be happening in 2017.
“The drought is really bad and there are millions of children at risk of starvation. I was born in Somalia and it breaks my heart to hear stories of how families are suffering.
“We have to act now; millions of lives are at stake – and young children are especially vulnerable.”
A country changed by the effects of drought
It’s difficult to imagine how it feels to live in this part of Africa and see your world collapse around you.
This drought is one of the worst in living memory, and it could become even more catastrophic than the famine in 2011, which claimed thousands of lives.
Livestock are dying, crops are failing and thousands of children are severely malnourished. Things are only set to get worse, with poor rains expected in the coming weeks.
We need to act now
As many as 19.5 million people are in urgent need of humanitarian aid in East Africa. Children are always the ones who suffer most.
We give our thanks to the Mo Farah Foundation, which has donated £100,000 to Save the Children to provide lifesaving healthcare and nutrition to children affected by the drought in Somaliland.
- East Africa: Thousands could die if the world does not act
- Somalia is on the verge of catastrophe: We must act now
- Somalia: Floods and destruction in Puntland
*Names changed to protect identities.