East Africa: All the Livestock Died

Nomads at a Loss without Livestock

An emergency relief team consisting of 4 staff members of AAR JAPAN entered Kenya to carry out relief operations for people affected by the severe drought. On August 9th, Go IGARASHI and Hiromi KAWANO arrived in Garissa, in eastern Kenya, and immediately embarked on a preliminary survey and preparation for distribution of relief supplies.

KAWANO interviewed Ms. Istarlin Khalif (32 years old) in Waberi District in Garissa. Ms. Khalif had been leading a nomadic lifestyle with her husband and seven children, but all of their cows and goats all died due to the drought.

She said, “Now that our animals are dead, we can neither drink milk nor eat meat. We used to make income by selling livestock before, which is impossible now. Twice a day, I walk more than 3km from here to get water, but it’s still not enough. We also need rice, flour, oil etc.” Many of her neighbors were also forced to desert their houses and go begging in town, after their stock of food had run out.

Hiromi KAWANO, AAR JAPAN asks Ms. Khalif (right) about her situation.

Many local residents abandoned their houses to go into town to beg for food.

Based on the preliminary survey, the emergency relief team is planning to initiate relief operations by distributing supplies to approximately 500 households in Garissa. In the capital city Nairobi, Ikuko NATORI and Yoshifumi KAWABATA, members of the team, are arranging procurement of the supplies, which will be delivered to Garissa this weekend. The team also plans to do a survey in Dadaab, an area nearer to the Somalian border. AAR JAPAN would like to emphasize the gravity of the calamity that is engulfing the millions of people in the area, and we appeal for immediate and continuous support from our donors.

Go IGARASHI, AAR JAPAN (center) meets a female senior in Iftin District in Garissa

Hiromi KAWANO, AAR JAPAN Tokyo office
Joining AAR JAPAN in November 2009, she has been in charge of the Water Supply and Hygiene Project in Sudan and the HIV/AIDS Initiative Project in Zambia. Involved in emergency assistance during the Pakistan Floods and the Haiti Earthquake in 2010. (Born in Fukuoka Prefecture) (Profile at the time of posting)