The world is experiencing an unprecedented hunger crisis. An estimated 345 million people are severely food insecure – more than twice the number of people just three short years ago. These developments have led to a surge in acute malnutrition, which currently threatens the lives of more than 50 million children worldwide.

Current conditions in Somalia are particularly grave, with 7.1 million people in need of emergency food aid and a famine declaration expected in October. Near-term famine risks also loom in five other countries where roughly 650,000 people face catastrophic levels of food insecurity.

The IRC has worked in Somalia for four decades and has deep experience responding to the most urgent crises worldwide. In this brief, we outline what is needed to halt famine in Somalia, increase access to lifesaving acute malnutrition treatment for children globally, and to galvanize focused action towards high-risk famine hotspots amid a proliferation of global initiatives.