It has been just over a year since Covid-19 was declared a global health emergency – a pandemic – and since then the world has grappled with this insidious virus and rushed to develop a vaccine that would put an end to this nightmare, restoring some semblance of normal.
However, there is another crisis unfolding with fresh warnings coming in overnight from the United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, that “three dozen countries are one step away from a declaration of famine”; including pockets of Yemen, which entered famine conditions.
“This is the biggest food crisis in decades,” says World Vision CEO Daniel Wordsworth, adding that the international aid organisation was already responding on the ground to a hunger crisis exacerbated by Covid-19.
In a statement released by World Vision Australia, the charity aid organisation says that these warnings of hunger emergencies in multiple countries highlight the urgency for Australia to show leadership in supporting the millions of people on the brink of famine.
World Vision Australia is calling on the Government to fund a $150 million emergency food aid package in the upcoming Federal Budget to avert looming famine and acute child malnutrition in several conflict settings.
“The world needs to act now. When famine is declared, people are already dying,” adds Mr Wordsworth.
“We want to work with the Australian Government to get much-needed emergency food assistance to people in the world living in desperate conditions.
“People are suffering most in the world’s fragile and conflict-affected countries, primarily the Middle East and Sub-Saharan Africa.”