Save the Children Federation

Save the Children is the world's leading independent organization for children. Our vision is a world in which every child attains the right to survival, protection, development and participation. Our mission is to inspire breakthroughs in the way the world treats children and to achieve immediate and lasting change in their lives.
Dec 18, 2012

We Are Almost There!

Lokarach Amuria at Lodwar stabilization center
Lokarach Amuria at Lodwar stabilization center

It has been over one year now since Merlin initiated its nutrition and health care services in response to the East Africa Food Crisis.  You are one of over 390 donors Global Giving donors that so far, have kindly supported our emergency work. Between you, nearly $21,500 has been raised toward the open target of $25,000.  So in this holiday season of thanks we would like to share with you what you generosity has actually helped us to accomplish.


Those Helped by You through Merlin’s Work 


Nursing Lokarach back to health

One year old Lokarach was referred to a Merlin stabilization center after being diagnosed as severely malnourished. 

Lokarach’s family are pastoralists, whose livelihoods depend on their livestock. The drought hit the family hard, as they lost the majority of their goats and Lokarach’s mother died.  His father, Kebo, was concerned that Lokarach’s life was also in danger.

Kebo trekked for three days on foot with his eldest daughter in order to bring Lokarach to the Merlin stabilization center.

Merlin staff diagnosed Lokarach as suffering from not only severe malnutrition, but also a lower respiratory tract infection, gastroenteritis, malaria and dehydration.  Lokarach was nursed back to health the stabilization center and is now stable and due to be discharged onto a feeding program.


Feeding Phoebe

Rising food prices following the drought didn’t just affect families that were dependent on livestock. Phoebe Ekaran’s mother, Miriam, weaved mats and roofing materials for a living, but rising food made purchasing food a challenge. Miriam brought her four year old daughter, Phoebe, to a Merlin clinic when she became ill with diarrhea and vomiting.

Phoebe was identified as being severely malnourished and suffering from malaria.  She was treated for malaria and fed Plumpy Nut, a high-energy, nutrient-rich food substitute, eventually being discharged after four months of treatment.

Her mother thought that Phoebe would never regain her strength or weight and was astonished by her recovery.


Saving Lokato's life

Lokato was admitted to a Merlin feeding program when she was nine months old with severe malnutrition. She was also diagnosed with malaria and gastroenteritis.

Her mother, Sarah, says that when the drought hit, their family of seven (herself, her husband and five children) were constantly hungry.  Previously they had sheep that they could sell, along with milk and meat but they their livestock died last summer.  Sarah began weaving mats for a living, making around 100 Kenya Shillings (less than one dollar) a month.  When Lokato became ill and refused to breast feed, Sarah thought she was dying.

After being given medication, supplies of Plumpy Nut, and attending consultations every two weeks for a month, Lokato was discharged and placed on a feeding program.  Now aged one year and eight months, Lokato is now a healthy, playful child.


Treating Benson for Malnutrition

Despite his mother working as a maid and his father as a security guard, Benson Ekutan’s parents struggled to pay for food after prices rocketed.  Benson was admitted to a stabilization center with a case of severe acute malnutrition with complications.

Severely dehydrated, Benson was put on an intravenous drip and screened by Merlin’s clinical officer for malnutrition. He was also diagnosed with malaria.  After three days of being fed a therapeutic milk formula he began to improve. After a total of seven days he was discharged to a feeding program where he received Plumpy Nut, for one month.

When Benson was brought into the clinic, Benson was unable to sit upright due to lack of strength. Now he can crawl, stand and is starting to try and walk.


Thank you for your support.

Phoebe Ekaran, Turkana, Kenya
Phoebe Ekaran, Turkana, Kenya
Lokato Ilipete, Turkana, Kenya
Lokato Ilipete, Turkana, Kenya
Benson Ekutan, Turkana, Kenya
Benson Ekutan, Turkana, Kenya
Dec 17, 2012

Increased Goat Milk Production is Good News for Children

One of Diego
One of Diego's goats getting ready for milking.

"With the support Save the Children has given me, I learned a lot about goats and all its various benefits. I have a goal which is to have my own milk production factory in about 5-year-time".

Those were the words of Diego Sarat, Save the Children agricultural leader in Media Luna the community in Guatemala, Cunen, Quiché.

This program is part of Save the Children strategy to reduce malnutrition among children under 3 years old who are underweight and to promote the financial development of their families. The new goal for the community is to provide farmers with an additional 6 goats in order to ensure daily milk production and a steady supply of nutritious milk for children and income to help parents buy food to feed their children.

Diego Sarat's family is the first one beneficiaries of this program which aims to driving a more ´professional´ management of the goats raising business and was chosen because he was a leader who had prominent agricultural success in his model farm. In addition, he has proven to be a hard worker and has space to accommodate goats and and livestock feed. Diego is committed to provide the milk the goats provide to 10 children in his community. These children are at high risk for malnutrition and are less than 3 years old and are underweight.

Diego is also able to sell the surplus milk and cheese (which he makes every two days) which helps nourish his children and increase the family's self-sufficiency budget. The management of the goats have multiple benefits, from milk production through the use of manure and urine to fertilize gardens and farm crops. 

Many thanks to our supporters for helping make this a reality!

Dec 4, 2012

Winter Update from East Africa Hunger Relief

Crisis continues in East Africa
Crisis continues in East Africa

Save the Children has the largest presence of any international NGO in Dollo Ado, in the southern Somali region of Ethiopia, both in the refugee camps and in the hosting community, with more than 400 staff and over 600 volunteers currently on the ground. Operating from its main sub-office in Dollo Ado town, Save the Children has over 20 years experience of working with the pastoralist and agro-pastoralist communities of Dollo Ado in food security, livelihoods, health, nutrition and water, sanitation and hygiene promotion (WASH) interventions.

Save the Children has been responding to the influx of refugees from Somalia since 2009. In response to the significant influx of refugees since July 2011, Save the Children scaled up the refugee emergency response in all the existing and new camps and currently has operations in all five refugee camps and the Transit Centre in Dollo Ado. Our work builds on partnerships with UN agencies, the Administration for Refugee and Returnee Affairs (ARRA), various Implementing Partner organizations, as well as the refugee and host communities in a variety of sectors including Child Protection, Emergency Primary Education, Early Childhood Care & Development (ECCD), Nutrition and School Feeding Programmes.

Save the Children is currently running a total of 23 centers across the five Refugee Camps and the Transit center (3 in Kobe, 3 in Melkadida, 4 in Haleweyn, 3 in Boramino (2 under construction), 10 in Bokolmayo and 1 in Transit centre). A total of over 54,047 direct beneficiaries and over 160,000 indirect beneficiaries from the refugee community access one or more of the services provided by Save the Children in all the 23 Centers across the five Refugee Camps and the Transit center.

There is a need across all of the camps to improve the education facilities and child friendly spaces. The majority of activities for young children are still housed in temporary structures – tents or frames covered with plastic sheeting. Tents of this kind are really only fit for purpose for a maximum of 6 months but some of the tents are still being used after a year. The harsh winds blowing sands and heavy rains during the rainy seasons in Dollo Ado have caused huge damage to these tents. Save the Children is trying to upgrade facilities to semi-permanent (solid foundations with temporary walls made from corrugated metal sheeting that are much safer and avoid winds and dust) or permanent structures (such as the new Child and Community Friendly Centers) wherever possible but urgently needs further funds to support these improvements. 

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