What are the main causes of famine?

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"Droughts are not new to me but to my experience, this is the worst I have ever seen." For 80-year-old Hawo, drought in Somalia is a risk to her animals, which are her only source of income.

Famines are caused by multiple factors including conflict and climate. A famine is not a natural disaster but a result of human actions or lack of action to prevent it. They do not happen overnight; they develop over time until they cause massive harm and suffering.

There are many factors causing the catastrophe unfolding in East Africa. For one, the region is suffering from a La-Niña-induced drought from four consecutive failed or below-average rainy seasons.

Droughts occur every few years in East Africa. Because of climate change, they are becoming even more frequent. These are the driest conditions with the highest temperatures in the region for more than 40 years.