Action Against Hunger has mobilized senior leaders to attend the Oslo Humanitarian Conference on Nigeria and Lake Chad this week on February 24th. The international community will convene at the conference to commit resources to address the severity of the humanitarian situation in Africa's Lake Chad region, which includes Cameroon, Chad, Niger, and Nigeria. Action Against Hunger will attend to share its experiences delivering humanitarian assistance on the front lines of the emergency in all four affected countries, and to advocate for the mobilization of greater resources to meet the overwhelming needs of millions of people suffering from conflict and hunger.
Action Against Hunger has issued a joint call to action from international NGOs of the region, highlighting "Seven Steps to Saving Lives and Assisting People in Nigeria and Lake Chad Basin." We are also a signatory to a joint letter from humanitarian organizations that addresses all member States of the United Nations, emphasizing the severity and widespread prevalance of acute undernutrition in the region.
The violent Boko Haram insurgency has intensified across the countries bordering Lake Chad over the past eight years, affecting Cameroon, Chad, Niger, and particularly northeast Nigeria, with widespread violations of international humanitarian law. Conflict has destroyed health facilities, schools, homes, and crops and has totally disrupted markets and people's livelihoods. In 2016, in the affected region, only one in every two severely malnourished children receives the lifesaving treatment she needs to survive.
In this region, the most populated in Africa, the future of an entire generation is at risk.
The humanitarian outlook for the region is grim. According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, 2.6 million people have been displaced, exacerbating an already precarious situation and leaving parents struggling to feed their children and keep them healthy.