May 14, 2013
Etobicoke — Millions of Somalis are living in crisis due to prolonged conflict and widespread food insecurity, resulting in acute malnutrition and displacement. Today, following a townhall held to discuss the current challenges in Somalia, Ted Opitz, Member of Parliament for Etobicoke Centre, announced on behalf of the Honourable Julian Fantino, Minister of International Cooperation, further life-saving assistance in response to humanitarian appeals for the people of Somalia.
"Somalia remains a country in extreme humanitarian crisis," said Mr. Opitz. "We are ensuring that life-saving humanitarian assistance, including food, water and shelter, is there for the most vulnerable people to help stave off the effects of food insecurity and conflict."
More than one million people in Somalia require immediate humanitarian assistance, and as many as 1.7 million more remain on the brink of crisis, with all reserves depleted and vulnerable to the slightest shock. Malnutrition rates in many areas of the country remain above the 15 per cent emergency threshold. Over 70 percent of the population is without reliable access to safe water. In addition, more than one million Somalis remain internally displaced, and as many as one million more have sought refuge in neighbouring countries.
"Canada is ensuring that Somalis affected by this crisis receive the emergency support they need,” said Minister Fantino. "Canada is responding quickly to this crisis and will continue to monitor the situation closely."
Today's announcement follows Mr. Opitz’s participation at the Conference on Somalia in London, U.K. on May 7, 2013 where he reiterated Canada's ongoing commitment to helping the most vulnerable people in Somalia, as well as of Somali refugees in Kenya.
Canada provides humanitarian assistance to the most vulnerable people facing natural disasters and conflict. Economic Action Plan 2013 affirms Canada's commitment to providing humanitarian assistance. The new Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development will also maintain the mandate of poverty alleviation and will help Canada achieve greater efficiency, accountability, and focus to continue to improve the lives of people in need around the world.
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For more information, media should contact:
Daniel Bezalel Richardsen
Press Secretary to the Minister of International Cooperation
Each year, Canada responds to the annual appeals issued by international and Canadian humanitarian agencies. These annual appeals outline the planned response to a variety of humanitarian crises due to conflict or food insecurity around the world. Such crises result from prolonged hunger, conflict, insecurity and the breakdown of civil order and they affect huge numbers of people, cause extensive human suffering, and are extremely difficult to resolve.
As outlined below, in response to the 2013 appeals for Somalia and Kenya, Canada is providing over $32 million in humanitarian assistance in response to humanitarian needs both inside Somalia as well as for Somali refugees residing in Kenya. This includes the $3.25 million which Mr. Opitz previously announced at the Conference on Somalia on May 7, 2013 in London, U.K.
Oxfam Canada will improve health and living conditions for an estimated 135,000 drought- and conflict-affected people in 14 communities in Garbaharey and Baardeheere districts, Gedo Region, through:
Through this project, Save the Children Canada will improve health and living conditions for up to 100,000 displaced and conflict-affected people in Mogadishu through:
Through this project, World Vision Canada will improve health and living conditions for as many as 27,000 drought- and conflict-affected people in Luuq District, Gedo Region, through:
This support will contribute to improved health, living conditions and protection for internally-displaced and other crisis-affected people, through the provision of:
CIDA's support will contribute to the improved health, well-being and protection of children, women and their families, through the provision of:
CIDA's support will contribute to the provision of food and nutrition assistance through the provision of:
CIDA's support will contribute to ensuring that relief efforts reach beneficiaries through the provision of:
This support will contribute to improved health and livelihoods of crisis-affected people through:
CIDA's support will contribute to improved health, living conditions and protection for Somali refugees through the provision of basic services (including shelter, water and sanitation, and medical care) and protection for more than 500,000 Somali refugees living in Kenya.
CIDA's support will contribute to the provision of food and nutrition assistance to crisis-affected and food-insecure people through general food distribution for more than 500,000 Somali refugees.