Jan 29, 2018

Famine Disaster Relief Declares 'Crisis' in Darfur

Families Face Starvation because of Failed Harvest
Families Face Starvation because of Failed Harvest

2018 has us worried beyond words for families in Darfur. The harvest has failed in many villages, leaving communities with very little food and constant fear of how they will feed their children in the coming months. Combined with years of continued violence in Darfur this has caused people's coping mechanisms to completely collapse. The creation of South Sudan has brought vast inflation to Sudan - 36%.   It is even higher in Darfur. £25 (about $35) is the average annual income in Darfur and due to last month's de-valuation of the Sudanese Pound, that is now worth only £9 (about $13) for the whole year. What can you buy with £9? Virtually nothing. Families have nothing to fall back on. A Donkey, essential in Darfur because there are no roads, now costs 5 to 6 years of a family's income. To lose a donkey is absolutely devastating.

Now, in many villages in Darfur, the harvest has only yielded 10% of what was planted.  If crops fail there is no food.  Those families who do not have animals will starve, yet the international community is silent.  Patricia Parker MBE,  Kids for Kids Founder and CEO, says "I spoke to two women who said they had planted 20 kilos of seed. They had saved every grain and planted each carefully by hand. They said they were going to be lucky to get 10 kilos out of the land. It would have been better to have eaten it, not planted it. Appalling." 

How would you feel if you entered the new year wondering how you were possibly going to feed your children? This is a constant thought in Darfur, a desert at the forefront of global warming. What's even worse is that Famine Disaster Relief has declared a state of 'crisis' across Darfur, yet no one has reacted. Not a single country or aid agency has reached out as yet to offer assistance to families facing starvation in 2018. Even though Kids for Kids is not an emergency aid agency, we cannot stand by.  The failed harvest means we have to provide millet to families.  But we also cannot forget their animals.    They too need help so we are appealing for funds to provide seed for families and fodder for the animals.   In times of desperate need, like this, it is essential for us to have the resources to help.

Please donate now so we can act before it is too late.   Patricia Parker explains: "We cannot let these families down.   If you have nothing, and you have given hope, that is absolutely the worst crime. We need to be able to plan ahead to prevent disasters.    People who support us regularly, however little, make an enormous difference. To give hope, and then give help, is valued beyond anything when you have so little."

Please tell your friends and family about our work. Darfur is not in the news, no one has responded to the declaration of 'crisis' in the villages, and we do not advertise. It is up to Kids for Kids to provide emergency aid, in addition to our sustainable projects.   Please can you  help us raise more funds to help families facing great deprivation now and in the year ahead?

Darfur Landscape
Darfur Landscape
Dec 29, 2017

More Resources Needed for our Kindergartens

Trees grow at our Kindergartens
Trees grow at our Kindergartens

As you know, education is the best long-term way out of poverty, and the earlier children start at school the more chance they have. That is why our Kindergartens are so badly needed in Darfur, where poverty is extreme. With an early education, children will be on the same educational track as those who are more fortunate, not falling behind due to lack of access. Think about when you were in Kindergarten. The early years are when children are at their most receptive. I am sure you still remember the essential skills you learned, plus how important it was to be with children your own age, learning to share, play, and to read and write. Kindergarten is the start to education, without which further schooling is limited and often out of reach. 

 

Our Kindergartens provide so much- not only classes and a teacher, but also much needed goats milk brought in by mothers in the village looking to help the poorest children. The latest report from Abu Nahala highlights "There are Citrus Fruit and Guava trees, Baobab and Neem trees in the Kindergarten growing very well." Trees planted outside the Kindergarten provide food and shade to the children attending the school. Everything we do is interlinked. If we are sending children to Kindergarten, we must ensure they have access to food so they can concentrate and properly benefit from the education that is given. This is why provision of seeds for planting trees in the schoolyard, and our goat loans are so important. Abu Nahala is providing education not only for children in the village, but it has also been possible for "20 kids to come to school from adjacent sub villages on the donkey cart".

 

In recent reports from Azagarfa and Abu Nahala Kindergartens, the teachers told us that neither of these schools have any children who are malnourished. This is a real testament to the Kids for Kids projects. The UN recently reported that children are malnourished in every village except the 87 Kids for Kids' villages.

 

However there is always more to do. At Abu Nahala, some of the poorest of the 75 students do not have breakfast in the morning. There are not enough notebooks and other teaching materials. We must do more to ensure our Kindergartens provide everything that is needed to give children the best chance possible for their futures. There could not be more deserving children. Their lives are incredibly hard. They will never have seen a toy before going to our Kids for Kids' school. 

Every year we have countless villages asking us to adopt them because they have seen how effective our projects are. There were 37 villages on our short list last year and we are only able to adopt five, approximately 10,500 people. Donations have crashed this year with so many other problems in the world, and in 2018 we are only going to be able to adopt three of those villages. We so desperately want to do as much as we can for children and families who live lives of deprivation. Building more Kindergartens will change the future for countless children because education is the route out of poverty. Please continue to help us help these children. Thank you.

Children in Darfur need access to Schools
Children in Darfur need access to Schools
Help us provide more essential equipment
Help us provide more essential equipment
Dec 13, 2017

2018 Brings New Challenges for Darfur Villages

Help us help refugees in Darfur
Help us help refugees in Darfur

Refugees from South Sudan flee famine and violence in the region, and head to nearby Darfur where they look for safety. We are so grateful to you for helping us help families as they arrive, but we just have to do more. It is becoming ever more important to ensure families are given basic essentials as they arrive. We aim to help build their strength so they do not become a burden to existing families in our villages- families who are already struggling with little. 

This coming year, refugee families will not only be from South Sudan, but from villages in Darfur. With 2018 right around the corner, Disaster and Famine Relief has issued a warning that many villages in Darfur are 'Stressed' whilst many others are already in 'Crisis'. This is because the rains, which initially were so heavy in some places that animals drowned and see was washed away, did not last long enough to enable the crops to grow and vast tracks withered and died, meaning many people will have little to eat in 2018. 

When a report like this is put out, aid agencies often rush in to help and make an appeal to the public for funds to help combat the situation. But this has not happened in Darfur, and it does not look like it is going to. Aid agencies are scarce in Sudan, let alone Darfur, so coming in to help in this situation requires major effort. With everything else going on in the world, Darfur is out of the news whilst families there are suffering. Crops are failing, and inflation is rising, and people are losing hope. Thanks to our sustainable projects which help people to help themselves, Kids for Kids villages provide a safe, secure place for families to flee to. We are not an emergency organisation, but we know we will be called upon to provide  for additional families that have nothing. 

As families look to our villages for help, we need to ensure that the sustainability of our projects is not threatened. We need to be able to help those in desperate need with basic resources. We ask you if you may be able to continue to give to our projects, as we are in urgent need of extra funds for this coming year. Your help is unequivocally essential to the work we do, and we must do more!

If you’re reading this while still doing your holiday shopping-- or before a special celebration like a birthday or wedding anniversary, we ask if you might consider 'Giving a Goat' or another one of the essentials listed on our project page, in the name of your loved one. We send your gift to Darfur and a personalised Gift Certificate to your loved ones. Please contact Mary Jane in the US with the details for the Gift Certificate at MaryJane-US@kidsforkids.org.uk OR our team in the UK at contact@kidsforkids.org.uk - a beautiful way to give back this Holiday Season! Thank you.

People walk a long long way for safety
People walk a long long way for safety
 
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