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Red Cross scales up drought response in Kwale

The Kenya Red Cross Society is implementing a drought emergency response in Kwale County to strengthen the capacities of local communities to respond to the effects of drought risks.

Kenya Red Cross Secretary General Dr Asha Mohammed said they are scaling up cash voucher assistance and livestock off take activities in the region.

Mohammed noted that the humanitarian organisation is undertaking a mitigation programme targeting 1,000 households affected by drought in Kwale, where each household will receive a Sh5, 467 to cushion them from the effects of the ongoing drought.

Mohammed spoke in Kwale town when she paid a courtesy call on area Deputy Governor (DG) Fatuma Achani. She said the drought mitigation programme is targeting 1500 beneficiaries spread in Kinango and Lungaa Lunga sub counties.

Mohammed said 1000 beneficiaries of cash voucher assistance of Sh5, 467 per month for two months that total to Sh10.8 million are underway in the region.

She said Kenya Red Cross will be scaling up its humanitarian cash relief as the drought which was declared a national disaster September last year persists. The money is primarily transferred using mobile phone-based money transfer service.

She said the mobile phone-driven cash programme will help prevent drought affected persons in drought-ravaged parts from sliding further into severe food insecurity.

Mohammed said through the livestock programme funded by the Danish Red Cross Society, Kenya Red Cross is buying goats from affected farmers, some of which are slaughtered and the meat given to communities.

“At least 2000 beneficiaries will benefit from the slaughtered animals,” she said adding that the livestock off take programme would cushion herders against animal loss and improving coping mechanism and nutrition support.

Mohammed said food security situation has been on a worsening trend in Arid and Semi-Arid counties attributed mainly to the poor performance of the October-December 2020 short rains and the March-April 2021 long rains.

The Deputy Governor thanked Kenya Red Cross Society for their activities in Kwale and assured them of continued support and partnership from the county government in all programs.

“As a devolved unit we welcome all activities aimed at helping our people,” Achani said.

By Hussein Abdullahi

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