Continued conflict, political instability, economic decline, increasing food insecurity, climatic shocks, disease outbreaks including COVID-19, and the worst desert locust infestation in years have deepened Somalia’s humanitarian and protection crisis. Some 5.9 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance across 74 districts in Somalia in 2021, an increase of 700,000 from 5.2 million in 2020.
Among poor agropastoral, marginalized and displaced communities, huge food and nutrition gaps exist. Food insecurity is expected to worsen in 2021 with an estimated 2.7 million people facing crisis or emergency levels of food insecurity by mid-year. In addition, it is projected that about 20 per cent of the population will suffer from direct and indirect impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Some 2.6 million internally displaced persons (IDPs) living in 2,000 sites face a serious risk of eviction, marginalization and exclusion, and lack access to essential services such as shelter, water and sanitation. People with disabilities – an estimated 15 per cent of the population – are more at risk from violence and abuse.
Climate-related shocks have exacerbated the situation. The rapid shifts from severe droughts to flooding is a reminder that Somalia is increasingly vulnerable to climate change.
The humanitarian community has prioritized the delivery of assistance and will target 4 million of the most vulnerable people in 2021. The 2021 Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP) seeks US$1.09 billion to provide life-saving assistance and livelihood support to those most affected.
In an integrated, inclusive and multisectoral approach, 363 humanitarian partners in close collaboration with the Federal Government of Somalia and Member States, plan to:
- reduce the loss of life for 3.1 million of the most severely vulnerable people, including 1 million children under 5, by decreasing the prevalence of hunger, acute malnutrition, public health threats and outbreaks, and abuse and violence. This includes provision of equitable life-saving emergency nutrition services to 722,000 acutely malnourished children under 5 years old;
- Sustain the lives of 4 million people requiring humanitarian assistance, including 2.4 million non-IDPs, 1.6 million IDPs and people with disability, by ensuring safe, equitable and dignified access to livelihoods and essential services;
- Uphold commitments to the centrality of protection across the humanitarian response through protection mainstreaming, accountability to affected populations and monitoring of the protection environment.
Apart from addressing the underlying causes of Somalia’s crises, the HRP aims to build long-term durable solutions by promoting linkages with the UN Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework for Somalia, thereby laying a foundation for increased focus on the humanitarian-development-peace nexus.
OCHA contributes to principled and effective humanitarian response in Somalia through coordination, advocacy, policy development, information management, and humanitarian financing tools and services. With a country head office in Mogadishu, OCHA Somalia operates through eight sub-offices located across the entire country and a sub-office in Nairobi, Kenya.