Severe drought has affected around 766,000 people since November 2016. Many are pastoralists and have lost up to 85% of their herds.

The drought and lack of food have heightened the risk of disease and illness, while flash rainstorms are further exacerbating the danger.


Our in-country partner ActionAid, has successfully distributed 441 ShelterBoxes to families across three areas.

These ShelterBoxes have been adapted to meet the specific needs of nomadic communities – the tent has been removed and replaced with two tarpaulins to waterproof existing shelters.

All the essential items within these ShelterBoxes are portable, vital for families in temporary camps so they can take them with them when they move on.

1000 additional ShelterBoxes are packed and are ready to be distributed in Somaliland. A ShelterBox Response Team has been deployed to monitor distributions with local partner, ActionAid.


We are working closely with ActionAid to ensure that families have safe shelter, supporting them with ShelterKits, including tarpaulins and kitchen sets.

The water filters are proving essential in combating disease, as dwindling water sources are becoming contaminated and some parts of Somaliland are in the grip of a cholera epidemic.

We used to have so many goats, but they have almost all died and there is no more pasture for those that are left.

~ Nimo, wife and mother of seven

Working in extreme conditions

I responded to Somaliland with ShelterBox in 2007 and 2009 for people displaced as a result of conflict, but this is different. This is a huge humanitarian challenge that will affect so many. I feel the work we are doing here will allow some of the most vulnerable of the displaced to continue to live as normal a life as possible with dignity, when conditions are so extreme.

– Pat Prendergast, ShelterBox Response Volunteer

As a new staff member it’s been fascinating to be in Somaliland and see how ShelterBox thoroughly investigates a scenario before it responds. This approach means that not only does the affected population receive assistance appropriate to their needs, it ensures ShelterBox makes the most of every pound donated to us.

– Dave Raybould, Operations Coordinator

“As Operations Team Lead I’ve responded to the biggest natural disasters in recent years, but I’ve never been in a situation like this. The scale and impact of this drought is overwhelming and its only going to get worse until the rains come, but we don’t even know when that will happen. People need ShelterBox’s aid right now, and we’re going to do everything we can to help them.”

– James Luxton, Operations Team Lead

A Closer Look

Operations Team Lead, James Luxton, reports from the field

Watch as he explains in greater depth the situation that Somaliland is facing and what ShelterBox is doing to respond.

Thousands of families in Somaliland and around the world need our help now.

Café Prosperity

The last time we were in Somaliland was in 2009, when we were helping people displaced by conflict.

Eight years on, as our team were travelling down a bumpy, dusty desert road, they came upon a lone tent with a ShelterBox and Rotary International logo on it.

The owner of the tent, Muna Mohammed now uses the tent as a café. Muna, aged 21, has made good use of the original tent, weaving it together with other material to form a traditional Somali house. This is a new method of up-cycling we haven’t seen before, and it’s great to see such adaptability and resilience.

Muna proudly told the team her tea is the best in Somaliland, she has called the café Prosperity.