How Many Countries are Affected by the Famine in The Horn of Africa?

According to the World Food Programme’s situation report, there are five countries affected by the famine in the Horn of Africa. The WFP aims to help 11.5 million people in Uganda, Kenya, Somalia, Djibouti, Ethiopia. And, although its government hasn’t officially acknowledged famine, Eritrea is also affected.

This special section on the Horn of Africa will not only update you about the famine, which organizations expect to get better before it gets worse, but it will also provide you with a better understanding of the people and cultures in the Horn of Africa. There are many, many blogs, videos, and stories out there already. This is simply an aggregated platform, pushing the multiple stories to you so you can be a witness.

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Food Heaven Made Beautiful

Wendy and Jess, the two gorgeous women of Food Heaven Made Easy, have put together an amazing couple of episodes on fresh, easy, delicious and healthy food.  They sprinkle the recipes with information on why each dish is good for your body and how to make variations of them.  I’ve posted Episode 1 (complete with a merengue dance break. What?! Yes!), but you should definitely head over to FoodHeavenMadeEasy.com to check out the other episode plus more recipes.


Compassion Through Witness: The Horn of Africa

By this time, I’m sure most of us have heard about the drought currently afflicting the Horn of Africa.  The famine that’s resulted from mismanaged governing leaves over 12 million Africans from Somalia, Ethiopia, Eritrea and Kenya starved and displaced.

As with any tragedy, the devastation of human life is heartbreaking.  Personally, I do not show photos of the starved bodies, but each day my heart goes out to the Horn.  And the compassion that humans have shown is tremendous. While pundits pontificate about the merits of sending food to corrupt governments, citizens of Kenya put their money to work for their fellow human beings.

When the worlds outside our small ones seem to be crumbling, we are often left feeling helpless; at least that’s how I feel as an African in diaspora.  Like many, I and my family are nearly overcome with the matter of staying alive and well in this economy and society; it’s all we can do at the end of the month to send something “back home” to care for others.

But, in reflecting over this summers’ recent and ongoing tragedies, feeling guilty is a cop out. It replaces compassion (centering others’ emotions and struggles above our own) and instead we internalize our own feelings.  Merely being a witness to these things by collecting links, watching the videos and looking at the photos (if you can), is enough to spark compassion.

And that compassion makes us better human beings.  Brown bodies may not always be centered in mainstream media, but that doesn’t make us less human.  Most of us cannot go to the Horn of Africa ourselves, heal the sick there and feed the hungry, but we can be a witness.  Through intention, we can read the links that come across our social media streams.  We can retweet them.  We can go into our communities and help feed the hungry people right next door.

We cannot bury our heads. We must bear witness so this doesn’t happen again.