Concern launches emergency appeal to avert impending humanitarian catastrophe in Afghanistan

The mountainous landscape in northern Afghanistan where aid has to be delivered before winter snows arrive.
The mountainous landscape of rural northern Afghanistan. Severe winter weather means parts of the country will be inaccessible when the heavy snowfall and extreme cold arrive, leaving millions of vulnerable Afghans with little to survive on, unless Concern can get food supplies into the region in the coming weeks Photo: Stefanie Glinski / Concern Worldwide

Concern Worldwide today launched an emergency appeal for public donations to fund its work in Afghanistan and help avert an impending humanitarian catastrophe.

“Even before the recent unprecedented change in context across the country, 18.4 million people were depending on humanitarian assistance,” Concern CEO Dominic MacSorley said. “More than one third of the population is facing crisis or emergency levels of food insecurity. Nearly half of all children under-five and a quarter of pregnant and breastfeeding women will need life-saving nutritional support over the next 12 months.”

In addition, after four decades of war, more than three million people are internally displaced. Afghanistan is also experiencing widespread drought, with more than 40% of crops lost as a result this year.

“Now, with winter approaching, humanitarian organisations like Concern are facing a race against time to prevent the current humanitarian crisis tipping Afghanistan into catastrophe,” Mr MacSorley warned.

Severe Winter Weather

“Severe winter weather and mountainous terrain means parts of the country will be inaccessible when the heavy snowfall and extreme cold arrive, leaving millions of vulnerable Afghans with little to survive on, unless we can get food supplies into the region in the coming weeks.”

Concern has worked in Afghanistan for the last 23 years and has an experienced team on the ground. “We are committed to staying and delivering humanitarian assistance to those most in need,” Mr MacSorley said. “We need funding to enable us do this.”

Concern’s team in Afghanistan is preparing to distribute food and shelter kits to communities in the north and north east of the country.  Funds raised by the public appeal will be used to address the immediate needs of families in desperate need of food and shelter through the provision of essential food assistance, as well as items such as clothing, blankets, heating and fuel.  These items are vital to ensure families are prepared to cope with the harsh winter, which is fast approaching.

Appeal for Donations

Meanwhile, Concern has welcomed the response to the United Nations appeal this week, with governments pledging $1.2 billion in funding for humanitarian assistance within Afghanistan and in neighbouring countries which are hosting Afghan refugees.

To donate to Concern’s Afghanistan emergency appeal visit https://www.concern.net/donate/afghanistan-displacement-crisis-appeal

For media queries contact Eamon Timmins, Media Relations Manager, Concern Worldwide at eamon.timmins@concern.net or 087 9880524

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