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Tuesday, September 26, 2023

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    An aid organisation warns of increased hunger in refugee camps in northern Kenya.

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    A humanitarian organisation has expressed concern over increased malnutrition in refugee camps in northern Kenya.

    According to the International Rescue Committee, children have been severely affected since food rations have fallen owing to insufficient financing.

    According to the organisation, the number of patients referred to camp hospitals for malnutrition increased by about 95% in May compared to the previous month in the Hagadera camp within the Dadaab complex, which mostly houses migrants from neighbouring Somalia.

    Other refugees from neighbouring South Sudan, Uganda, and Burundi are also suffering in the Kakuma camp.

    Kenya is home to almost 600,000 refugees in the Dadaab and Kakuma camps, as well as in urban areas.

    Following six consecutive failed rainy seasons, the East African area is undergoing its worst drought in decades, affecting millions of people.

    Mohammed el Montassir, country director of IRC Kenya, asked governments, donors, and the international community to act together to tackle malnutrition and offer treatment.

    “Our team on the ground has witnessed firsthand the devastating impact of malnutrition on children in the Kakuma and Hagadera camps — the situation demands urgent attention,” he said in a statement.

    Malnutrition cases without problems jumped from 64 to 109 in one of the camps in May, while those with complications increased from 37 to 72, according to the IRC.

    According to Dr. Sila Monthe, an IRC health manager, the number of hospitalised patients in Kakuma is double the bed capacity.

    Monthe told The Associated Press that the team has added wards, expanded staffing, and extended working hours but is still not at the acceptable healthcare worker-to-patient ratio.

    “I’m frustrated and feel like there’s nothing I can do.” “I’ve noticed a drop in morale and a lot of burnout on my team,” she added.

    Malnourished children are more susceptible to diseases, and there has already been an epidemic of malaria in the camps, according to Monthe.

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