Demand for ZF’s Services Grow as Other Relief Agencies Flee Kenyan Refugee Camp
Zakat Foundation of America (ZF) has been working in Kenya’s Dadaab camp since the end of July 2011, when refugees left famine-stricken Somalia in search of food and water in Kenya. Although the population of the camp expanded from 350,000 in July to 520,230 in November, according to our field representative there have been signs of hope since our work began four months ago in Kenya’s largest refugee camp.
A few of the positive changes happening in the camp:
- During Udhiya / Qurbani we were able to feed families in marginalized areas of the camp who had been overlooked
- The rains have come, giving some relief from the three-year dry season
- Shelter construction has improved, which is essential in this season
Unfortunately, after relief workers were kidnapped about a month ago, many aid agencies pulled out of the camp due to security issues.
As a result of fewer aid agencies working in the camp:
- Some refugees stated they did not receive food rations at all last month
- It has became more difficult for refugees to find medical care
- Refugees could be seen carrying ill relatives on donkey carts or atop sacks in search of help at distant medical camps
Because of the greatly reduced humanitarian force in the camp, ZF must expand its efforts to support the increased need for emergency assistance.
At present, in order of priority, most needed are:
- Food and water
- Medication, with malaria and cholera prevention being a priority (because of the rains)
- Clothes, especially for the children and women
The dire situation in the camps is a result of so many factors beyond our control, but we can still help and support these refugees with their basic needs. Thanks to our local representative and volunteers we have been able to sustain our aid efforts and serve those in need as efficiently as possible.
Thank you for your continued support of ZF’s Somalia Emergency Relief program in Kenya. Please visit our donations page to remember the Somali refugees in their time of need.