Children in previously inaccessible conflict zones in northeast Nigeria need life-saving treatment for malnutrition. The situation is dire. Here are some things you need to know.
By Leah Oatway
Dec 7 2016
1. In northeast Nigeria, conflict between Boko Haram and government forces has uprooted more than 2 million people from their homes.
2. In late July, the Government of Nigeria declared a food and nutrition emergency in Borno State, in the northeast of the country
3. Due to the Government’s success in reclaiming areas previously controlled by Boko Haram, aid organisations like Action Against Hunger have finally gained limited access to displaced people in some parts of Borno State
4. Around 400,000 children aged under five are at risk of severe acute malnutrition over the next 12 months across the states of Adamawa, Borno and Yobe; with 244,000 in Borno state alone.
5. Children are drinking stagnant water from contaminated sources and food is scarce.
6. Families displaced by the violence, and the communities hosting many of them, urgently need help - including food, water, sanitation, protection, education, shelter and health services.
7. More than 80 per cent of Borno State is considered high or very high risk to aid workers, which restricts their access to the people who need them most.
8. Action Against Hunger completed a rigorous nutrition assessment in Monguno, in Borno State. Our findings suggest a prevalence of global acute malnutrition at 28% and a prevalence of severe acute malnutrition at 8%, both of which are almost double the internationally recognised emergency threshold.
9. Action Against Hunger has carried out numerous rigorous technical assessments of malnutrition levels in Borno, which guide the analysis of the severity of the overall emergency.
10. Our mobile health clinics in Maiduguri and Monguno in Borno State are providing life-saving therapeutic treatment to acutely malnourished children as well as vital health care for pregnant women, nursing mothers, and children under five years old.
11. We still don't know the full extent of the suffering as many areas are not yet accessible to aid organisations. We fear what we are seeing may be just the tip of the iceberg.
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