Needs escalating as tens of thousands are at risk of hunger in Honduras

Published: 22 October 2014

Panama- 22 October, 2014- There is growing concern for the livelihoods and food security of some 571,710 people affected by droughts in Honduras. The worsening condition of food security is due to; the loss of crops and food resources, increased prices of basic food items, and diminished income for day labourers due to decreased production.

To address these increasing humanitarian needs the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and the Honduran Red Cross have launched a 1,227,172 Swiss francs international appeal to assist 3,500 families (17,500 people) experiencing food insecurity due to their loss of livelihoods and restricted access to food and water sources.

Lower income families who lost their crops are also experiencing higher food prices which is rapidly decreasing food security, especially among extremely poor households and vulnerable groups such as children , pregnant and nursing women and the elderly. A concerning fact given the levels of chronic malnutrition in Honduras are 22.6 percent, and considering that 42.5 percent of Hondurans live in extreme poverty.

According to Oscar Fernandez Disaster Management Coordinator of the Honduras Red Cross, "the most vulnerable families currently have low capacity to respond and ensure their survival. Many of the families have little if any access to clean and safe water sources. " So far Red Cross evaluations show a decrease in the number of meals and access to water. Some families are selling their belongings and livestock to secure food for survival, while others are migrating to escape the effects of the drought.

"We will be working in close coordination with local and national authorities as well as other humanitarian organization in order to address the most urgent needs to facilitate access to food and water and hygiene, as well as improve nutrition and recover the basic production capacities of those affected by the drought" says Fernandez. Some of the key actions to be undertaken are distribution of food, nutritional surveillance, seed distribution, diversification of livelihood sources and water and sanitation activities.

Benoit Porte, Coordinator of the IFRC's Pan-American Disaster Response Unit mentions that humanitarian assistance has been lacking and that "there is significant risk to the population in already fragile areas of health and livelihoods due to inadequate resources to cope with a dearth of food and income that could last until the next harvest in August 2015".

Given this disquieting scenario humanitarian assistance is important and fundamental in order to meet urgent needs in livelihoods, food and nutrition, as well as water and sanitation of the most vulnerable, who without the proper support face an uncertain and bleak future.

For further information, please contact:
In Honduras:
Aracely Ramos, Communication Coordinator, Honduras Red Cross
Mobile: +50498981020, E-mail:

In Panama
Enrique Jair Guevara, Communication Office, IFRC
Mobile : +50766707365 E-mail :