Tanzania: Food Insecurity (Drought) – Emergency Plan of Action (EPoA) DREF Operation Update n ° 1 MDRTZ030 – United Republic of Tanzania

Summary of major revisions made to emergency plan of action:

This operations update is to inform stakeholders of the following:

  • Results of the detailed multi-stakeholder assessment conducted from 14th February to March 1st, 2022, which has revealed the impact of the drought and related needs. As the situation is still unfolding, there is a dire need to address its effects now.
  • The increase of the intervention target from 2,500 people (500 HH) to 6,000 people (1,200HH) as a result of the above-mentioned assessment
  • Extension of implementation timeframe from three months to six months with a new end date on 31 July 2022.
  • The request for the second allocation of CHF 219,529 for a total DREF grant of 466,010 Swiss francs to enable TRCS to deliver assistance to 1,200 targeted households. In addition to the above, the operation update provides information on progress since launching the DREF operation. Indeed, the Tanzania Red Cross Society (TRCS) has to date reached a total of 6,788 people mostly on WAS, Emergency household items, protection, gender and inclusion (PGI), and health. This extension will focus on livelihoods, additional target population, wash, health, nutrition, food security, PGI, and Community Engagement and Accountability (CEA). In the extension period, TRCS will concentrate in the same areas of Longido, Simanjiro, and Mbulu but will extend to Monduli as an additional area. The number of villages will thus increase from 9 to 11. TRCS will procure 1,400 jerricans to be distributed to an additional 700 households. The number of cash recipients will increase to 1,200 (this includes, 700 additional households plus the 500 households in the initial phase). The cash distributions will be on a monthly basis for three consecutive months from May to July 2022.

A. SITUATION ANALYSIS

The Climate Outlook for November 2021 – April 2022 (NDJFMA) Rainfall Season indicated that rains were likely to be below normal over some regions in the country which may result in water levels in rivers, reservoirs and a decrease in aquifer recharge were likely to occur in areas where below normal rainfall is expected. From November 2021 to January 2022 prolonged periods of dry spells were experienced and a forecasted slight increase in rainfall was expected in March 2022.

The Government under the Tanzania Food and Nutrition Security Analysis System known in Swahili as ‘Mfumo wa Uchambuzi wa Uhakika wa Chakula na Lishe’ (MUCHALU) framework actioned by conducting the IPC, in November 2021, and highlighted some areas representing different livelihood zones proximity to represent the entire zones.

From the IPC results, the four district councils of Handeni, Longido, Mkinga, and Monduli will also remain classified in IPC Phase 3 (Crisis). In February 2022, a Comprehensive Food Security and Nutrition Assessment Report Coordinated by the National Food Security Division – Ministry of Agriculture and Disaster Management Department-Prime Minister’s Office highlights the projection of the drought for the projected period of analysis (May – September 2022). The report shows the number of people facing high levels of acute food insecurity is expected to increase, representing 17% of the population analyzed against 13% in the current period of analysis. This is due to anticipated inadequate rainfall, which is expected to be normal to below normal. This is likely to contribute to the low production of food crops and livestock, which will, in turn, lead to decreasing food stocks available at the household level, as a majority of households depend on rain-fed farming and agro-pastoralism. As a consequence of low production, prices are also projected to increase and will negatively impact food access. It is projected that about 497,000 people (14% of the population analyzed) will be in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) and about 95,000 people (3% of the population analyzed) will be in an Emergency (IPC Phase 4). Around 929,000 people (26% of the population analyzed) are projected to be in a stressed situation (IPC Phase 2).

In December 2021 situation went worse, impacts of the forecast were experienced in the Nothern Maasai pastoralist Livelihood Zone (TLZ 14, 01) in the Arusha region which includes parts of Longido and Monduli districts and Manyara regions, Simanjiro, and Kiteto where the prolonged dry spell from November 2021 to 15 January 2022 resulted to a severe shortage of pasture and water for livestock in this zone.

TRCS in collaboration with Government Authorities conducted an assessment in the most affected and targeted areas, which are predominantly occupied by the Maasai community whose source of livelihood depends on the livestock. During the assessment, it was realized more than 60,000 animals were dead, some of the carcasses were found in the boom, communities went for several coping mechanisms, positive and negative to rescue the situation, the triggering factor being reduced forage and water to accommodate peoples ‘ animals. Among the coping mechanisms included migration and concentration of livestock in better grazing areas away from their domiciles. Utilization of family food stocks to feed livestock, and spending some resources to buy animal food supplements mainly impacted families’ economy. Apart from economic loss, communities are psychologically affected and require counseling.

Together with the assessment, TRCS responded to save the situation and address some of the effects caused by this with several interventions including Health and Nutrition, WASH, Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS), PGI, and Livelihood through a community-centered approach.

Despite these interventions, the situation remains worrisome because of the prolonged dry spells which were expected to regain from the March-May rain season (Masika rain), which has not taken place so far. More risk is foreseen of additional households with livelihood needs, probably moving from the recent IPC phases to a more critical situation. Nevertheless, it will take up to six months for skinny cows to regain weight (https://www.quora.com/How-do-skinny-cows-gain-weight) and that is the time the affected communities will be able to get more milk for sale and restore their livelihood.

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