In recent months, Meserete Jima and her husband have been consumed with worry, trying to figure out what they would scrounge together to feed their two children.

In the wake of severe drought caused by the El Niño weather event, large swaths of land surrounding their community in Dugda, Ethiopia have been stripped of life.

Most years, Meserete’s family was able to grow more than enough food to meet their needs. But this year, they lost their entire crop.

To pay for food and other expenses, the family sold all but two of their sheep. The two that remain are emaciated—selling them will bring little income.

Meserete’s husband went in search of work in other parts of the country, but was unable to find anything. “I’m very concerned for my family’s future,” the troubled mother shared.

Meserete’s story is shared with about 10 million other people in Ethiopia left in need of emergency food assistance due to the drought.

Overwhelming Relief

Photo: Canadian Foodgrains Bank

Photo: Canadian Foodgrains Bank

It is astonishing that a community faced with so much loss and teetering on the edge of starvation could express such joy. But at the emergency food distribution site in Dugda, the sense of relief and celebration is palpable.

With its partners at Canadian Foodgrains Bank, PWS&D is helping provide 41,000 people in Ethiopia with monthly food rations. Meserete, her family and her neighbours are receiving vegetable oil, maize and pulses. For families with children under the age of five, famix—a protein rich food supplement specially designed for young children—is also being provided.

“When all your emotional and mental energy is being consumed with trying to figure out how you and your children will find enough food for tomorrow, the relief at knowing you now have enough food for another month is incredible,” Jim Cornelius, Executive Director of Canadian Foodgrains Bank, explains.

A smiling Meserete is overcome with this sense of relief—the rations that her family is receiving have been vital to her children’s well-being.

Respond With Us!

You can make a difference for a family like Meserete’s by supporting PWS&D’s drought response through your church, by mailing a cheque to the office, donating online, or calling 1-800-619-7301 x291. Please mark all donations “Africa Drought Response.” Please give today.

*Adapted from a story on the Canadian Foodgrains Bank website.