On 12 April 2016 President Peter Muthalika declared a state of national disaster in Malawi. In 2015, the country experienced the worst floods in living memory. Now drought, caused by El Niño, has struck the whole central and southern region. 6.5 million people, expected to rise to 8 million, have no food. The next harvest is not due till April 2017 even if people can find seed to plant. And weather experts have predicted further flooding for Malawi in 2017 from La Niña.
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In the midst of this, many of the communities we work with still have food because we have helped them do what they can themselves:
Deliya Selemani, aged 51, lives with her husband and grandchild. Last year, they only harvested three bags of sorghum. They ran out of food. Eagles helped their village set up a communal seed bank with a special early maturing variety of seed. This year, Deliya received 3kg of seed and harvested 2.5 oxcarts of sorghum (photo left). She said:
“We can now eat; I have enough food at home and will gladly repay the seed to our communal seed bank so other people can benefit next year.”
But many others still need help back from the brink of disaster. Eagles is providing short-term basic food and provisions for the most vulnerable households that have nothing. And it needs to reach other communities with the long-term support.