Lagos - More than 15 000 families in
terror-prone northeast Nigeria are set to benefit from the expansion by global
organisation, Mercy Corps, into the region.
Communities within Damboa and other locations in south Borno
previously occupied by Boko Haram will be covered.
They were inaccessible previously following an invasion by
the terror group.
“As we’ve had better access to these areas, the level and
urgency of the need we see is horrifying and demands immediate action,” says
Iveta Ouvry, Mercy Corps Country Director in Nigeria.
“We are working as quickly as possible to expand our ongoing
delivery of food vouchers, financial assistance and water, sanitation and
Many people in these communities survive by selling foraged
firewood, begging or labouring for less than the equivalent of $1 per day.
It is reported 97 percent of people interviewed reported
they could not afford to buy food in the previous four weeks.
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At least 80 percent of shelters in these areas were damaged
during the recent conflict. Because of continued insecurity, farmers cannot
reach the land where they cultivate food to eat and sell.
One of the few organisations in south Borno, Mercy Corps has
been delivering financial and food assistance as well as repairing water points
and latrines in the areas of Biu, Kwaya Kusar and Hawul.
The organisation also provides protection for vulnerable
civilians, particularly women and children, and mobilizes and trains community members
to recognise and respond to gender-based violence.
“This is not a crisis that will be solved with one
silver-bullet solution,” says Ouvry.
“Both international donors and governments in the region
need to respond quickly with short and long-term solutions.”
Beyond meeting urgent humanitarian needs, Mercy Corp’s work
in Nigeria includes mitigating conflicts, building social cohesion, connecting
people to financial services and working to empower adolescent girls.
- CAJ News