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Canadians come together to help fight famine

Ottawa, August 17, 2017 – With 20 million women, children and men struggling to find food and safe drinking water in parts of Africa and Yemen, Canadians donated more than $8 million to the Humanitarian Coalition and its member agencies during the Stop Famine Together joint campaign.

Thanks to the Government of Canada’s Famine Relief Fund, which matched eligible donations, even more relief aid is available to those in need.

“Immediate action saves lives and thanks to generous donations from Canadians, we’ve been able to do just that,” said Richard Morgan, Executive Director of the Humanitarian Coalition. “The Government of Canada played a critical leadership role in raising awareness for this crisis.”

The seven member agencies of the Humanitarian Coalition are providing immediate life-saving aid. Some examples of their assistance on the ground include:

  • food, clean water and health intervention for internally displaced people in South Sudan
  • medical assistance for people, especially children and pregnant women, on the brink of starvation in Somalia
  • clean water and hygiene assistance to prevent the spread of cholera in Yemen
  • shelter for refugees in Uganda
  • clean water, sanitation and hygiene assistance to communities in Ethiopia
  • safe places for children and women displaced by drought in Kenya

This help would not have been possible without Canadians across the country responding compassionately and creatively.

  • Ottawa artist Martha Nixon donated half of the proceeds from an art sale she held in June.
  • Students at Cairine Wilson Secondary School in Ottawa fundraised even while studying for their year-end exams.
  • St. James Lutheran Church in Elmira, Ontario held a benefit concert.
  • Six communities took part in the Red Alert campaign, lighting up some of their buildings and monuments in red to support the campaign and raise awareness.
  • The Prime Minister, MPs and mayors took to social media to promote the campaign and encourage Canadians to donate.

Morgan cautions that while vital progress is being made, the situation on the ground remains dire and fragile. “The suffering and desperation is not over. We need a sustained international humanitarian effort to continue fighting this hunger crisis and preventing famine. More importantly peace is needed in the countries facing famine and hunger because of conflict, such as South Sudan and Yemen.”


Yosé Cormier
Communications Officer
Humanitarian Coalition

Meghan Francis Media & PR Specialist
Plan International Canada
416-920-1654 x376

About the Humanitarian Coalition

The Humanitarian Coalition is Canada’s only joint appeal mechanism for international disasters and emergencies. It is made up of seven leading humanitarian agencies: Canadian Lutheran World Relief, CARE Canada, Islamic Relief Canada, Oxfam Canada, Oxfam-Québec, Plan International Canada, and Save the Children Canada. The members of the Humanitarian Coalition work together to reduce unnecessary competition, better educate the public on humanitarian needs, increase the impact of Canadian humanitarian responses and reduce administrative costs. Collectively, they are present in 150 countries.