CAFOD, the Church’s overseas aid and development charity, warns that up to 20 million people are fighting for their lives in Ethiopia, Kenya and South Sudan.
This is down to the spiralling cost of food and the fact that the region is facing the worst drought in 40 years.
The Archbishop of Nairobi, Kenya, the Most Reverend Philip Anyolo, says that malnutrition levels have risen, millions of people are now in need of assistance, and explains to the international community that “it is the Gospel mandate to respond.”
Communities in the north of Kenya have been stretched beyond breaking point. Between October 2021 and March 2022, 1.5 million cattle and sheep died. For pastoralists, livestock are akin to a savings account – to see your animals die is the equivalent of having your life savings wiped out.
Now, the people themselves are close to starving to death.
The Catholic Bishops of Kenya have launched their own appeal through Kenya’s Church network but are concerned at the lack of interest from the international community.
Father Ferdinand Lugonzo, General Secretary of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops, is determined to make people listen:
“The Church is present. We bring out the facts to be the voice of the voiceless. This is bringing Laudato Si to life. We will do our part. I just appeal for you to donate as much as you can.”
CAFOD has been working alongside communities across Kenya for over 30 years to help them cope better with emergencies – including three years of drought before this one. This crisis is so bad that now these resilient people and communities are under threat. But CAFOD says it will not give up.
If you feel you can, please donate to help families and communities in East Africa and around the world and help fight the causes of hunger longer term.
© CAFOD. Used with permission.