I recently traveled to visit our programs in Burkina Faso where the hunger crisis is threatening the lives of children and families in a country already suffering from conflict and drought. This crisis extends across the Sahel and across West and Central Africa - the world’s most food insecure region in proportion to its population.

In Dori, in northern Burkina Faso, I visited a local clinic where Save the Children and Doctors of the World work to care for children with severe acute malnutrition. I have visited centers like these before but it’s always shocking to see such desperate conditions.

Even though the clinic had around 20 babies and infants in its care, the place was eerily quiet. These children were using what little energy they had to simple stay alive.

Similar clinics across the Sahel and around the world are dealing with an increase in children suffering from severe acute malnutrition.

The combined impact of conflict, climate change, COVID-19, and the cost of soaring food prices from the conflict in Ukraine is behind the worst global hunger crisis in decades.

In any severe food crisis, children are always the most vulnerable. Malnutrition caused by extreme hunger is one of the biggest killers of young children around the world today. And yet it is entirely preventable. We don’t need to spend billions on researching a cure or developing a vaccine. We know how to treat malnutrition and we know how to prevent it.

Personal stories from countries struggling with hunger are strikingly similar and food insecurity almost always affects people who are already suffering from persistent poverty and inequality.

A perfect storm of shocks has left up to 750,000 people facing near-famine conditions right now. It’s nearly impossible to imagine, but another 49 million more people are in need of immediate, emergency food assistance.

It is not an exaggeration to say that failure of the international community to act now will prove catastrophic, and time is running out to save the lives of millions of children.

Read the full article about child hunger crisis by Greg Ramm at Save the Children.