Africa’s 150 million children in poverty, climate catastrophe: Report

Nairobi, October 28 (IANS) More than 150 million children in the East and South Africa are gripped by severe poverty and climate disasters, says a report by an international charity.

The Save the Children charity said in a report released here on Thursday that 16.31 million children in Kenya, or 67 percent of the country’s children, are living with the twin impacts of poverty and climate emergency, Xinhua news agency reported.

Save the Children Kenya and Madagascar director Yvonne Arunga said the climate emergency and inequality issues are deeply linked and cannot be seen in isolation from each other.

Arunga said crises like these push people deeper into dire poverty and make millions more vulnerable to the next flood or drought.

β€œIn Kenya, this connection could not be more evident. The devastating drought we have seen in Kenya and the greater Horn of Africa is the worst in 40 years and has hit the poorest parts of the country hardest, leaving millions of people hungry and many displaced,” she added.

South Sudan topped the list of countries in eastern and southern Africa most likely to face this “double threat”, with 87 percent of the country’s children affected, followed by Mozambique (80 percent) and Madagascar (73 percent). according to the report, titled β€” Generation Hope: 2.4 billion reasons to end the global climate crisis and inequality.

Kenya ranks 10th (67 percent) in the world and third in the region in terms of the total number of children facing this dual threat, the report said.

The report found that while 21.24 million children in Kenya are estimated to be affected by at least one extreme climate event annually, some are at particular risk because they live in poverty and therefore have fewer resources to protect themselves and recover.

Save the Children has warned that if the climate and inequality crisis is not addressed urgently, the frequency and severity of humanitarian and cost-of-living crises will soar.

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