uuuuuSpeaking after the launch of the 2015 Global Humanitarian Response plans in Geneva on 8 December 2014, the Humanitarian Coordinator for Somalia, Mr. Philippe Lazzarini, revealed that humanitarian organizations in Somalia require US$ 863 million to meet the most urgent needs of 2.76 million Somalis in 2015. “The humanitarian situation in Somalia has significantly deteriorated this year, for the first time since the end of the 2011 famine. A combination of conflict, drought, floods, increasing food prices, access constraints and low funding is once again threatening the lives and livelihoods of vulnerable Somalis.

Over 3 million Somalis are in urgent need of humanitarian assistance. Of these, an estimated 1 million are unable to meet their minimum food requirements – 20 per cent increase compared to the same time last year. We were also forced to discontinue or scale down vital food, health and livelihood activities due to funding shortage. Notably, UNICEF discontinued primary healthcare services for 2.5 million people in southern and central Somalia.

In 2015, we are asking for $863 million to reach 2.76 million people or 86 per cent of the 3.2 million in need. The 2015 Somalia Humanitarian Response Plan is focused on providing life-saving, protection and resilience assistance.

In 2014, even though we received only 41 per cent of the funding requested to address humanitarian needs, we provided 500,000 people with improved access to food and 1.4 million people with livelihood asset activities throughout the country. More than 290,000 and 400,000 children were vaccinated for measles and polio respectively, some 319,000 children under the age of 5 were treated for acute malnutrition, and 500,000 people were assisted with sustained access to water. We are grateful for the continued support from the donor community in 2014 and call on them to maintain their focus on and increase their funding in Somalia for humanitarian programmes in 2015.

We provided this aid despite Somalia being one of the most dangerous and challenging places in the world in which to operate. We worked hard to mitigate the risks of delivering assistance in Somalia, including preventing the diversion of funds. Increasingly robust monitoring and risk management were able to detect misappropriation of funds and help prevent the diversion of resources and ensure aid reaches vulnerable communities.

The unfolding humanitarian crisis comes at a critical time in Somalia when there is a positive narrative in the making. While peace and state-building efforts have not yet translated to an improvement in the humanitarian crisis, a deepening of the crisis risks to reverse peace and state-building gains made during the last two years. We call on the international community to stand with the people of Somalia in this time of unprecedented global need. We must avoid a repeat of the 2011 crisis.”