Sudipta Kumar, Country Director of ActionAid Afghanistan, says:
“There are currently almost 20 million people – just under half the population – living in acute food insecurity in Afghanistan, with the vast majority of the population also living below the poverty line.
“Afghans are now waiting for the next harvest season so that they may be able to eat again. However, the combination of drought; extremely high food, fuel and fertiliser prices; and a reduction in international grant support means that prospects for the people of Afghanistan are not as good as they could be.
“We cannot have long-term recovery without support from the international community. Financial institutions need to be reopened so that families can once again start to work and regain some financial stability, allowing them to begin to rebuild their lives.
“Recovery also needs to focus on increased support for women and girls, who are not getting the access to services and education they need.
“Afghans have now been suffering for too long – Afghans deserve better.”
As part of its response to the recent earthquake, ActionAid and its partners have supplied 1,000 families with food packages, as well as providing 388 families with unconditional cash transfers to help them recover. The organisation is also on the ground to provide shelter support before the winter arrives.
In addition to this, ActionAid has been working with partners to provide life-saving food support to 10,000 families in other parts of Afghanistan, with a view to later moving towards providing livelihood assistance, such as financial support to restart a business; seed and fertiliser kits for a kitchen garden; or supporting people to restock their poultry or livestock. This will enable families to support themselves in the longer term.