As millions of people in Afghanistan face winter without food or shelter, CAFOD is joining forces with the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) to give help.
More than eight million people are on the brink of famine, with a million children under the age of five at risk of dying over the next three months. Acting quickly is essential before the freezing winter sets in, with temperatures falling as low as -12 degrees centigrade.
CAFOD’s Head of Humanitarian Response, Rhea Tariq, said: “A deadly combination of conflict and political turmoil, climate change and Covid has left millions of people in Afghanistan in desperate need of humanitarian aid.
“As always, it’s the most vulnerable – women and children – who are paying the biggest price.”
“With winter closing in, families have little to eat. Economic collapse and rising prices are leaving families unable to purchase fuel for heating or food and other essential supplies.
Drought and conflict have left more than 22 million people, over half the population, facing starvation this winter.
Much of the country has gone through two crippling droughts in the last four years. Families have lost their crops and livestock, forcing them to move towards towns in search of work and food.
CAFOD’s appeal will fund DEC charities and their local partners to provide emergency food and nutrition support for children, support healthcare facilities, provide winter kits to help displaced families stay warm, supply clean drinking water and protect women and girls.
Jo Kitterick, CAFOD’s Director of Fundraising and Community Participation, said: “At the heart of our Catholic communities across England and Wales is an amazing compassion and generosity in response to the suffering of our sisters and brothers.
“To date the enormous response to the crisis in Afghanistan from our supporters has been humbling. Parishes and individuals have donated, fundraised and prayed for the people of Afghanistan who face extreme hunger; a testament to our commitment and willingness to put our faith into action.
“It is now critical to reach vulnerable families who have lost everything and no longer have ways of coping. Working with the Disasters Emergency Committee will help CAFOD’s local aid experts and Caritas sister agencies reach more people in need, as winter sets in.
“Our common humanity calls on us to respond to suffering. In doing so we express hope through the vital support we can deliver.”