A year ago, the United Church launched an Extreme Hunger Appeal. At the time, the United Nations had declared a famine in South Sudan, calling it the largest humanitarian crisis since 1945.

We have received $713,438 in donations since early April 2017, and are deeply thankful to all the generous individuals who supported this appeal and the important work carried out by Mission & Service global partners.

Your support helped our partners meet the needs of thousands of displaced people in South Sudan, Kenya, Ethiopia and Somalia who are facing extreme hunger as a result of devastating conflict and drought made worse by climate change.

Donations supported Mission & Service partners, including ACT Alliance, the National Council of Churches in Kenya (NCCK) and the Organization of African Instituted Churches. United Church contributions to the Canadian Foodgrains Bank (CFGB) supported United Church-NCCK projects in Kenya, as well as initiatives led by other CFGB members in Somalia, South Sudan and Ethiopia

As a member of the ACT Alliance, the United Church also helped NCCK and its member churches in Kenya provide over 30,000 people with humanitarian relief, which included sanitation and hygiene initiatives. Donations also played a role in restoring livelihoods. Farmers were able to purchase new livestock and given certified drought-resistant seeds.

United Church of Canada donors helped another Mission & Service partner, the Organization of African Instituted Churches (OAIC). This partner support displaced people and refugees affected by conflict and drought in Nigeria and Uganda. Here are a few highlights of these efforts:

  • 2,000 households in Nigeria and Uganda received grants for drought-resistant, re-plantable seeds to help build food-secure communities;
  • 1,000 pregnant and lactating mothers as well as children received food parcels and nutritional training and support; and
  • South Sudanese refugees living in Uganda and host communities were able to plant tree seedlings to help mitigate the long-term effects of deforestation and climate change.

Working with other members of the CFGB in an ecumenical response to the extreme hunger in South Sudan, the United Church also contributed to a food assistance project coordinated by the Adventist Development and Relief Agence (ADRA) in Kapoeta North, South Sudan. Around 13,500 people in 68 villages received assistance.

ONGOING NEED AND SUPPORT

While media coverage—and as a result interest in—this issue has waned, there is still a need to support people who are struggling. We will continue to graciously accept your donations.

Recently, heavy rains have hit parts of Kenya. This is a blessing for some communities, but brings the dangers of flooding and the spread of diseases to others.

Meanwhile, the situation in South Sudan, Somalia and Nigeria is complex and responses must shift to addressing the root causes of ongoing conflict that make it difficult to provide long-term solutions to hunger in these countries.

“The challenges of prolonged conflict in Northern Nigeria and South Sudan require collective efforts, which bring together several faith communities and other civil society organizations,” says Rev. Nicta Lubaale, General Secretary of the OAIC. “The ultimate solution to these crises is peace.”

United Church partners in Africa continue to respond to rapidly changing circumstances. The need now is for a sustained global response to the chronic underlying causes of conflict, climate change and the resulting displacement of people.

The United Church of Canada continues to support partners in their efforts to build peace and sustainable, resilient communities that can tackle the global challenges of climate change, including periodic droughts.

Thank you once again for your generous donations toward the Extreme Hunger Appeal.

For more information, please contact:

Wendy Gichuru Program Coordinator Africa & Middle East Partnership Program

416-231-7680 ext. 4038
1-800-268-3781 ext. 4038

wgichuru [at] united-church.ca (subject: Extreme%20Hunger%20Appeal)