Context and needs
The Kenyan government declared the drought a national disaster on September 8, 2021, 2020 short rains and the March-May 2021 long rains. Both seasons were characterized by late dips, below-average cumulative amounts and poor temporal and spatial distribution. The latest national early warning bulletin for drought reports that twelve counties1, namely Marsabit, Mandera, Garissa, Wajir, Kilifi, Tana River, Makueni, Lamu, Samburu, Kitui, Isiolo and Laikipia are in the drought phase from July 2021 shot for August reports, that more than 2.1 million people in the arid and semi-arid regions2 (ASAL) of Kenya are suffering from serious food insecurity after two consecutive bad rainy seasons that have hampered crop production. In addition, the Kenyan Meteorological Agency predicts that the third consecutive bad rainy season (October-December – short rains) will result in below-average harvests and deteriorating livestock conditions in northern and eastern Kenya.
As the situation worsened, the President of the Republic of Kenya declared the drought a national disaster on Wednesday, September 8, 2021. It is reported that the National Treasury Department and the Department of the Interior and National Government Coordination have been directed to advance government efforts to support the affected households, including the distribution of water and relief supplies and the reception of livestock. The United Nations issued a $ 139.5 million Flash Appeal in September 2021, aimed at 1.27 million drought-affected populations3.
Resilience is severely weakened by economic and household health damage as people are forced to develop negative coping strategies to overcome acute food insecurity. Other causes of acute food insecurity, in addition to the poor performance of the rainy season, include recurring droughts, the COVID-19 pandemic and its associated effects, conflict and insecurity, and the recent desert locust invasion, all of which are driving up staple foods and livestock prices.