Makalle (spelled Mek’ele in Tigray) is the capital of the Tigray Region in northern Ethiopia, near the border with Eritrea, and has a population of around 170,000 people.
In this northernmost region of Ethiopia, decades of armed conflict, drought, food shortages and rising proces have marked the lives o the population. The COVID-19 pandemic and the rising costs of food have made matters worse.
Over 23 million children are in need of humanitarian assistance. They need of support so that they can live safe and healthy childhoods.
Since 1976, SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children, young people and families and advocating for their rights in Makalle.
Children in the Tigray region are not getting the food they need to grow healthily. According to the United Nations, almost one in three children are suffering from acute malnutrition.
Droughts, famines and locust infestations often affect this northern area of Ethiopia. In addition, the violent conflict meant that many areas could not be provided with medical care, or any othe type of support.
Families that are already at risk and living from one day to the next were the most affected by all of these factors.
1.8 million people have been forced to leave their homes in the Tigray region. They have had to flee due to the fighting and the unstable political, social and economic situation.
When families are forced to move, children suffer most. They are uprooted from their daily lives, and it becomes harder to them to go to school regularly.
As parents have to find new ways of making a living, they have enough food for the family. Many children have to work in order to contribute to the household.