Nelly Bassily | September 21, 2009
A scarcity of rain during the traditional rainy season has threatened the food security of millions of people across East Africa. According to the World Food Programme, Kenya and Somalia have been hit hardest by the drought. The organization states that the humanitarian situation is the worst that it has been in Kenya since 2000 and the worst that it has been in Somalia since 1991.
If your radio station broadcasts to an area that is currently in crisis due to drought-related food shortages, these are two ways that you can support your community:
1) Find out which local NGOs or humanitarian organizations are providing assistance in your area. Broadcast detailed information on how people can access this assistance. (For information on how to find humanitarian organizations working in your area, see this week’s Radio Resource Bank.)
2) Seek out stories of communities or local organizations (such as farmers’ groups) that are working together to survive the drought. Find out what they have done to improve their food security, share resources, or other strategies, and share these stories to inspire others.
As this week’s news story reminds us, crop selection and planning play important roles in recovering from a period of drought. They can also help farmers reduce their vulnerability to drought and improve their chances of producing enough food for their families, even when rain is scarce.
The following Farm Radio International scripts describe methods for crop selection and other techniques that may help farmers mitigate the risk of drought:
–Farmers have important knowledge about weather and environmental change – Part I: Learning about local signs of drought (Package 75, Script 5, June 2005)
–Farmers have important knowledge about weather and environmental change – Part II: Preparing for drought (Package 75, Script 6, June 2005)
–Choosing crops for drought-prone areas (Package 73, Script 3, January 2005)
–Sekedo, a drought resistant sorghum for Karamoja (Package 84, Script 1, August 2008)
–Infiltration pits to combat drought (Package 64, Script 6, July 2002)
–Trees against disasters (Package 64, Script 2, July 2002)