Ongoing Crisis in the Horn of Africa

Everything has Changed

People of north-eastern Ethiopia say they have never experienced conditions as extreme as the current drought caused by El Niño.

Massive Malnutrition in Ethiopia

Over 10 million people in Ethiopia are in need of emergency food assistance because of the extreme drought caused by the global weather phenomenon El Niño.

Responding to Crisis

Liz McLaughlin, Executive Director of CARE's Foundation Unit, traveled to the Horn of Africa in 2011 to see CARE's response to this massive emergency. She captured her journey on camera. 

Fighting Poverty & Drought with Honeybees

Nuriya, an Ethiopian mother of six children, has been able to make ends meet on her own since her husband passed away 11 years ago. By farming bees, a trade usually engaged by men, Nuriya is able to provide for her family.

Dadaab Refugee Camp

The Dadaab refugee camps were originally built to hold only 90,000 people, but a recent food crisis and famine have caused it to grow to nearly five times the intended size.

Blogs From the Horn of Africa

Visit our Notes From the Field blog for first-hand accounts of the food crisis in the Horn of Africa and read stories about the assistance CARE has been providing to communities and refugees across the region.

The Horn of Africa Food and Refugee Crisis


Conditions in the Horn of Africa have improved. The number of people suffering from hunger is now at its lowest since famine was declared in parts of southern Somalia in 2011. The fall in the food insecure population is the result of several successive seasons of average to above average rainfall, low food prices, increased livestock prices, increased livestock herd sizes, and sustained humanitarian response. Despite improvements in food security, acute malnutrition rates continue to remain very high, especially in the South. An estimated 870,000 people will be in a state of food crisis from August to December 2013. An estimated additional 2.3 million people, one-third of Somalia’s population, are classified as stressed, and their food security remains fragile. Reports released this month indicate, during the peak of the crisis, 258,000 people died in Somalia from hunger and related causes, and half of them were children younger than 5 years old.

Overall, progress is being made in the region, and some refugees are slowly returning to their homes. With this opportunity to break the hunger cycle, efforts to provide long-term solutions to hunger and poverty are important. CARE continues to work in Somalia, Ethiopia and Kenya to meet immediate needs and help communities become increasingly resilient for the future. CARE is also continuing to provide aid to more than 400,000 refugees in Dadaab, Kenya, the largest refugee camp in the world.


How CARE works in emergencies


In 2011 alone, CARE reached 12 million people affected by natural disasters, conflict situations and other crises.


In emergencies, CARE is among the first to arrive and the last to leave. When it comes to responding to an emergency, timing is crucial.