Famine in Africa Solutions

1. Prevent land grabbing - We need to stop people from taking other people’s land, give everyone an opportunity to be able to grow their food. By giving farmers back their land they can begin to build up a reliable source of food for them and their families. If all farmers can keep their land, food production will increase which will lower levels of malnutrition and raise up the economy.

2. Support small farmers - A combination of aid, education in low-tech methods such as better rice planting and irrigation, and the introduction of better seeds and fertiliser could spark a green revolution in Africa, such as the one that transformed South Asia in the 20th century. By supporting and educating small farmers this can be seen on a larger scale and impact a whole community or country.

Fig 1: Halima Hassan comforts her severely malnourished son Abdulrahman Abshir, 7 months, at the Banadir hospital in Mogadishu.

3. Target infant nutrition - To eliminate malnutrition in children, education on good feeding techniques and getting the right nutrients to the mother and child from the beginning of pregnancy if vital. By getting educators into Africa and teaching these skills this allows mothers and their children to benefit from this information and pass down information to future generations. (See Fig 1 and 2)

4. Reduce poverty - We can start to educate children at a young age with the knowledge and life skills they need to realise potential and essentials for life. This will help these children to be able to find jobs as they grow up and to provide for their families economically. This will help to end the cycle of poverty.

Fig 2: One who is getting help ... Aden Salaad, 2, at a Doctors Without Borders hospital in Kenya, where he is being treated for malnutrition.

5. Water resource management - By planning, developing and distributing the optimum use of water resources this helps to benefit more than just one small area on a larger scale. One example is in the district of Guji zone. They pumped water from a major river to enable households to produce grain for consumption and sell.

6. Political response - by governments and international donors. We need to ensure that the officials, government and international donors are investing in social services and infrastructure that benefit everyone. According to the UN 1 billion dollars is required to meet immediate needs, so far donors have only donated 200m.

Fig 3: People are divide pulses among themselves at a United Nations World Food Programme food distribution centre in Chikwawa district, Malawi.

7. Agricultural improvement - This can be achieved by increasing research into stronger plant production, improving water irrigation, increase the use of fertilisers, improve the education of new technologies, adopt genetically modified crops; GM crops reduced pesticide use by 37%, increased yields by 22%, and farmer profits by 68%. (See Fig 4)

Fig 4: Farmer Serena Gadinala stands next to her wilted crops in the Neno district of southern Malawi.

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