The EU has allocated an additional €15 million to respond to the food crisis that is affecting over 8.7 million people in Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger and Mauritania. “The number of people suffering from the food crisis in Burkina Faso, Niger, Mali and Mauritania is at a record high compared to previous years”, according to a statement from Brussels, and estimates point to a “major food crisis during the 2022 lean season”, between May and August next year. Ahead of that period, the World Food Programme has already warned that there will be funding gaps that will affect its ability to assist people during that time in the Sahel. The EU funding will therefore “contribute to an early response to reduce the impact of a major humanitarian crisis in 2022”. According to EU Commissioner for Crisis Management Janez Lenarčič, “our partnership with the region” is important to the EU, and humanitarian aid “is an indication of our readiness to help meet the growing needs – and funding shortfalls – in Burkina Faso, Mali, Mauritania, and Niger, and provide assistance to the most vulnerable members of the population in the Sahel”. The region’s misery is fuelled by increasingly violent conflicts, deep poverty and climate change. This year, the EU has allocated €237.4 million to the Sahel. This funding has been used not only to address the food crisis, but also to boost access to health care and drinking water, treat malnourished children and protect the most vulnerable, and ensure access to education for children affected by armed conflict.