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Menacing dark clouds brooding over bare fields – this is how you can imagine countryside ravaged by locusts in East Africa. TERRA TECH aids with funding of 15 000 Euros for seeds and emergency nutrition.

Desperate situation in the region
“When I visited them, you could see hopelessness and sadness on the faces of farmers. They were badly affected by the locust invasion and tried to save whatever they could,” described Abdulaziz Aragie the situation he witnessed in northeastern Ethiopia. Like many other volunteers, the managing director of our local partner Kelem tries his best to provide small farmers with harvesting aid. These often try to defend themselves from the effects of the plague with whatever little they have at disposal. In the region of Amhara, people could only create as much noise as possible to scare locusts away.

Destroyed crops
Locusts have been devouring lands of Ethiopia, neighbouring Somalia and Kenya, along with India and Pakistan, for the last several months. This could be a doomsday for small families and their close ones. Farms and crops, their main source of livelihood, were destroyed. Many of the fields are completely empty. “To save what little remained, people were forced to harvest the plants of maize and sorghum, which were still in an unripe state,” tells Aragie. What could be saved from the grasshoppers can only be used as animal feed.

Pestilence for decades
Media reports describe the situation as something out of the Bible.  According to a spokesman for the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), a swarm of medium-sized locusts can devour the similar amount of food as the entire population of Kenya. In East Africa alone, around 12 million people are at risk of food shortages, and many fear the number could increase. It is the worst situation in Ethiopia in the past 25 years. “I’ve seen things like small earthquakes, heavy rains and flooding over the years. But nothing was like what we’re seeing now with locust invasion,” said Nuru Mohammed Seid, Kelem project co-ordinator.

Help is urgently needed
There is no end in sight. Everpresent heavy rains and floods offer locusts an opportunity to multiply exponentially. According to some estimates, the crisis will continue into the summer of 2020 due to the forecasted rainy season. FAO say the number of locusts could grow 500 times by June. United Nations officials urged swift international aid to combat the crisis before it increases even further. Locusts swarms are not stopping in aforementioned countries – they seem to be moving towards other countries such as South Sudan and Uganda. “Small farmers are at risk of poverty and hunger unless they are aided until the next harvest,” says Aragie.

This is where TERRA TECH along with local partner Kelem come in. Seeds and emergency nutrition cost 25 Euros and provide for a family of five. With already provided 15 000 Euros we will be able to help 600 families. But more than 9400 families in the project area are in dire need of help.

Joint mission of Aktion Deutschland Hilft
TERRA TECH is taking part in the joint Humanitarian mission of Aktion Deutschland Hilft.

 


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Please support our work


Accounts for donation:

Sparkasse Marburg-Biedenkopf
IBAN: DE46 5335 0000 0000 0444 40
BIC: HELADEF1MAR

Volksbank Mittelhessen
IBAN: DE58 5139 0000 0016 4090 06
BIC: VBMHDE5F


or conveniently online:

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