In this Easter season, Canadian Foodgrains Bank is reminding the public about the pressing food crisis in several countries in Africa, including Somalia and South Sudan, where CFB has active missions.
“In Somalia the main problem is drought, but there is also government instability which doesn’t help the situation at all,” explains Canadian Foodgrains Bank fundraising director John Longhurst.
“In South Sudan it’s not a matter of drought, but a matter of conflict entirely. That is a human-made disaster. Two rebel factions are fighting and creating all sorts of problems for their populace.”
Adding to the gravity of the situation, says Longhurst, is the ongoing refugee exodus heading out of the South Sudan region.
“On a human scale, the toll is pretty horrific,” confirms Longhurst. “Some people are in a famine situation, but most are experiencing a food crisis right now. The land is actually quite fertile and could support them, but they are fleeing for their lives. And that has created the refugee situation in Darfur.”
The Canadian Foodgrains Bank has two active missions in these countries: A $460,000 mission in South Sudan which is feeding an estimated 42,000 people. And a $500,000 mission in Somalia supporting an estimated 1,000 households with direct food aid.
“There is a mission here, and a need,” states Longhurst. “The beautiful thing about the Foodgrains Bank is when something like this comes along, we don’t have to send out an urgent appeal to help us respond.
“We’ve got money bank because people donated that money last year after their harvest came in. So we are able to respond quickly.”
For more information on the ongoing missions visit the Canadian Foodgrains Bank website.