Dr Ramiz Alakbarov, the UN Secretary General's Deputy Special Representative for Afghanistan, released a statement this week on the continued food insecurity and malnutrition crisis facing people in Afghanistan. The prognosis is grim and the situation in the country remains very difficult.

Economic collapse and drought has resulted in 80 per cent of the population facing debt and millions of Afghans facing the prospect of starvation. 95 per cent of the population are not eating enough food. That percentage rises to almost 100 per cent for families headed by women. 

What does acute food insecurity mean?

Acute food insecurity means that a person is regularly unable to consume adequate food to the extent to which their lives or livelihoods are in immediate danger.

This means that over 23 million people in Afghanistan require urgent support to feed themselves and their families in order to avoid a further deepening of the crisis. Young children are particularly vulnerable, with fears that as many as three million will suffer from severe malnutrition and many may face death.

What has Afghanaid been doing?

Thanks to the generosity of our supporters, since August 2021 we have reached over 634,100 men, women, boys, and girls with emergency humanitarian assistance. This has included life-saving and life-sustaining food packages and cash for food; emergency shelter and heating equipment; cooking equipment and hygiene kits; agricultural supplies such as seeds, fertilisers and animal feed; and nutritious supplements for malnourished babies and children. In the coming months, we will reach close to 300,000 more people like Masoma and Abdul-Alim with this type of support.

After a harsh winter, the people of Afghanistan will enter spring bearing the burden of last year's severe drought - the worst in years - and what will likely be another bad harvest this year. This alongside the huge increase in the cost of food and fuel, means the challenges facing communities are not going away quick.

As we have done throughout our history in times of crisis, Afghanaid's dedicated teams are working alongside Afghan communities to identify their most urgent needs and bring life saving assistance. And over the coming year, we hope to raise the resources that will allow us to support those same communities to plant and cultivate their crops, and to rebuild their herds, so that they can one again support themselves.

- Charles Davy, Afghanaid Managing Director.

Whilst emergency assistance, including food aid, is a welcome relief to families, long term improvement to people's lives will come from access to an income they earn for themselves, and the skills needed to achieve this. As the snow melts and spring arrives, we are also restarting a number of projects which will be more focussed on longer term resilience for remote communities. But there is currently no end in sight to this humanitarian crisis and so we are continuing to appeal for donations to our crisis appeal for the foreseeable future. 

As Dr Ramiz Alakbarov said:

As we collectively support millions of Afghans to rebuild their lives and communities, we must remember that the long road to a better future is impossible on empty stomach.

How your support can help the people of Afghanistan

There is as yet very little light at the end of the tunnel in Afghanistan. But our supporters have already made a massive difference and we hope that together we can continue to ensure that the people of Afghanistan are not forgotten. Please give what you can today:

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