Charities Handed £200K To Tackle Hunger In Malawi

16 March 2016, 11:18 | Updated: 16 March 2016, 11:19

The Government has pledged £200,000 to help tackle hunger in Malawi following the country's worst flooding in 50 years.

The Scottish charity Mary's Meals and Unicef will share the funding to help feed people dealing with the long-term impacts of last year's "erratic weather''.

Flooding, droughts and the following drop in food production have caused 2.83 million people, including one million children, to lose reliable access to sufficient food, according to the Scottish Government.

In December last year, more than 7,500 people needed medical treatment for malnutrition.

Martin Swinchatt, country director of Mary's Meals Malawi, said: "The floods at the beginning of last year were some of the worst Malawi has ever seen, and many people lost their homes and livelihood.

"Since then, erratic weather, drought and widespread crop failure have all contributed to the current food crisis and maize prices are incredibly high.''

Lucinda Rivers, head of Unicef UK in Scotland, said: "In the past few months our humanitarian work has included screening over 230,000 children under the age of five and treating almost 13,500 children who were seriously malnourished.

"We are immensely grateful to the Scottish Government for supporting this work, which will help make a significant difference to the children affected by this crisis.''

International Development Minister Humza Yousaf said: "Having access to safe, sufficient, nutritious food to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle should be an automatic right.

"This funding will help those most in need. We are committed to doing all we can to help our friends in Malawi to overcome the effects of the devastating floods.''