Facing drought in Somalia
Before a hunger emergency struck Somalia, Hawo Abdi and her husband were successful herders near their country’s border with Kenya.
However, two years of intensive drought parched the land to the point that they could no longer raise the camels, cattle, sheep and goats that supported them. As her family faced economic ruin, Abdi’s husband died. She was two months pregnant with the couple’s fifth child.
Desperate to feed her children, Abdi felt she had no choice but to make the two-day journey to a camp for internally displaced persons to ensure the safety of her four young children and unborn child. Against the background of Somalia’s civil war, the journey was fraught with danger, including the possibility of attack from armed groups and assault.
“We had nothing to take with us, and we had to beg for water,” she says.
Abdi’s mission to bring her children to a safe refuge was successful. Now she and her children receive a monthly allocation of rice, beans, cooking oil and sugar that One Great Hour of Sharing gifts help provide.
While their day-to-day life remains difficult, Abdi and her children, including her new baby, are safe and nourished. “The food aid has improved the living conditions of my family,” she says. “I was able to feed my starving children.”
Fighting hunger around the world
Sadly, Abdi’s story is not unique. According to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, 5.4 million people in Somalia are food insecure, and another 2.6 million people are displaced. The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) partners with Kaalmo Relief and Development to provide food aid to people in the camp. “We are very grateful for your contribution,” says Mohamed Ahmed Iriri, Kaalmo’s director. “It will help us a lot in fighting the hunger and poverty affecting our people in Somalia.”
One Great Hour of Sharing gifts are helping to address famine and extreme hunger through PC(USA) partners in other countries, including Northern Nigeria, South Sudan and Yemen. These partners help with emergency food assistance and address the underlying causes of hunger and homelessness for the millions of people struggling to maintain their very existence.
In Isaiah 58, the prophet calls us to be “repairers of the breach, restorers of streets to live in,” to care for the hungry, the weak and the vulnerable. Through One Great Hour of Sharing, we extend shelter to those who have no place to stay, food to those who are hungry and compassion to those who have pain—be it physical, emotional or spiritual. Together, we become the household of God; and all are welcome. Won’t you join us with a gift to One Great Hour of Sharing? Because when we all do a little, it adds up to a lot.
Let us pray
God of refuge, gather us into your household. Under your roof, let us meet together at your table of grace to be fed with good food. Grant us the dream of your world where all are fed, all are housed and all have the dignity you granted from the beginning. May our gifts begin to build this dream. Amen.
For more information and resources related to the One Great Hour of Sharing offering, visit pcusa.org/oghs.
This post is based on the minute for mission script which can be found on our website as a script.
Please give generously to the Offering:
- Through your congregation
- Text OGHS to 20222 to give $25