Red Cross says three billion dollars needed to reach 25 million North Ethiopians requiring urgent assistance due to two-and-a-half years of conflict.
The government and humanitarian partners plan to reach 25 million North Ethiopians through food assistance (20.1 million people) and non-food assistance for 5.2 million people, with an estimated budget of USD 3.1 billion.
The Ethiopian Red Cross Society (ERCS) conducted a multisectoral assessment in Tigray in February 2023 in integration with assessments in Amhara and Afar regions. The final consolidated report was endorsed on April 13, 2023.
In November 2022, the Government of Ethiopia and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) signed an agreement to permanently cease hostilities, ending the two-year conflict and protecting civilians’ human rights.
The assessment report notes that communities need support reviving livelihoods heavily impacted in the two years of conflict, to resume self-sufficiency. Farming input assistance could improve food availability in the upcoming July-October rainy season, while restarting broader livelihood programs.
Health and nutrition service access has deteriorated due to significant damage leaving over 80 percent of the regional health system incapacitated. Rebuilding will take long-term efforts.
Meanwhile, health staff have gone unpaid for 20 months.
While working to revive services, gaps remain in bringing healthcare closer to communities.
Recovery can occur in phases prioritizing essential lifesaving services nearby.
ERCS aims to support to resume ambulance services could aid referrals from primary to tertiary facilities or main hospitals.
ERCS manager Birhanu Mekonen said the Society’s response did not match needs. “We need support,” he said, requesting aid from organizations like the Dutch and Netherlands Red Cross and 10 others.
In many areas where there was a war in northern Ethiopia, aid has been suspended for over five months due to allegations of aid diversion. It was partially resumed last month, though the situation remains dire, particularly in rural areas as many villages still have not received any humanitarian assistance in the past six months.