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Climate change and hunger

Today, as part of Blog Action Day, thousands of people are blogging about climate change. For Concern Worldwide’s entry, I’ve decided to write about how climate change is affecting world hunger.

Nowadays, it’s still not uncommon to hear people talk about climate change as a catastrophe that is yet to happen. However, many of the countries where Concern works are already feeling the effects of climate change. It’s clear, then, that this is a catastrophe that has already begun.

Hunger “on the march”

A recent article in the Guardian about Concern’s work mentioned how “just 15 years ago, the UN, western charities, governments and some food companies all thought that world hunger could be more or less eradicated.”

But now, as a result of climate change, “real, long-term, gnawing hunger…is officially on the march from sub-Saharan Africa to Asia…In September there were food emergencies in Kenya, Yemen, Somalia, Syria, Ethiopia, Chad, Congo DRC, Sudan, Guatemala, Pakistan and a dozen other countries.”

Years of drought

The currant crisis in Kenya is a case in point. A three-year long drought has pushed the country into a severe food crisis. 

Emergency response

Concern is responding to this emergency. Koki Kaylo, Concern's nutritionist in northern Kenya, spoke to the Guardian about the crisis: “The situation here is not good. We have seen 300 cases of severely malnourished children…in just a few months. Normally you might expect to see only 200 in a year.”

Looking to the future

Koki Kaylo admits that Concern’s work in Kenya is “only a pinprick in the sea of need.” The same can be said about efforts to combat climate change in general.

As time goes on, the effects of climate change are likely to get much worse. Droughts like the one raging in Kenya will almost certainly become more common. It is imperative that we find more effective ways to deal with these crises.

New ways to fight hunger

The situation seems bleak. But to conclude on a positive note, Concern has been working hard to meet this challenge head on. Through initiatives like our CTC programme and our use of mobile phone technology, we have had great success in finding new ways to fight hunger. Watch the video below to find out more.