In April 2014, an estimated 90,000 people fleeing violence in South Sudan had settled in Ethiopia’s Gambella region.
Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is providing assistance in four different locations. In Lietchuor camp, home to 44,000 refugees, MSF has set up an inpatient department with an intensive therapeutic feeding center (85 beds), an out-patient department and a maternity ward.
Huge numbers of Somalis have left the country’s central regions to seek refuge in the capital, Mogadishu, since July. They have had to leave due to poor agricultural production, loss of livestock because of drought, increasing prices, and perpetual insecurity. Once they reach Mogadishu, however, they are vulnerable to a host of health problems.
Photographer Sven Torfinn recently visited Galcayo, a divided town in Somalia where MSF is working to deliver desperately-needed health care amid drought and malnutrition exacerbated by years of conflict.
The three refugee camps run by the office of the United Nations High Commissoner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Dadaab, Kenya, 50 miles from Somalia, are full. But more and more people arrive here every day. An extension to one of the camps could provide a temporary solution to providing shelter for new arrivals who now must create shelters from nothing in the barren desert. But the extension lies half-built and empty due to a breakdown in negotiations between the Kenyan authorities and the UNHCR. So the new arrivals remain in the desert with nowhere to go.
Galcayo is located in south-central Somalia with a ‘green line’ that divides Galcayo South and Galcayo North between warring factions. Twenty years of violence have destroyed basic state services and the healthcare system. Women and children are particularly vulnerable, with one in 12 women dying during childbirth and one in seven children dying before his or her first birthday.