The recent conflict and change of government in Afghanistan, coupled with the worst drought in 27 years, have led people to flee their homes and deepened chronic poverty and hunger. Economic collapse has been followed by increasingly rising food prices, and as winter takes hold, more than 22 million people – 55% of the population – do not know where their next meal is coming from.
The Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC), which brings together 15 of the UK’s leading humanitarian aid charities, has launched an appeal to provide life-saving aid to as many people as possible.
DEC member charities are on the ground in Afghanistan and able to scale up their operations to reach as many people as possible. They can get food and nutritional support to those most in need, but they must act fast – winter conditions are extremely harsh in Afghanistan and transport routes can be made inaccessible due to heavy snowfall. The UN predicts many lives will be lost if aid efforts are not immediately scaled up now before the winter conditions set in.
How NatWest Group is supporting the DEC appeal:
- We’re matching colleague and customer donations up to £100K, between now and 31 March, or until the £100K has been used
- Customers can donate directly to the appeal via the DEC website which is being promoted on our NatWest and Royal Bank of Scotland websites
- Reward current account customers can donate their Rewards via MyRewards on their mobile app or online
- Colleagues can donate, via Payroll Giving, or by using a dedicated internal Sponsor Me page
The ongoing humanitarian crisis is having devastating consequences, with the head of the World Food Programme describing the situation as “the worst humanitarian crisis on earth”. Over 3 million children under five are expected to suffer from acute malnutrition before March, with at least a million at risk of dying. Unless the international community acts now, the outlook for people in Afghanistan this winter is very bleak.
Michael Duncan, Head of Giving Strategy & Programmes at NatWest Group, said: "Our purpose drives us to make a positive contribution to society and we have the opportunity, in partnership with DEC, to draw on the generosity of our colleagues and customers to make a difference to those most in need in Afghanistan."