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Climate Change Threatens Mombasa

Climate Change Threatens Mombasa’s Socioeconomic Growth

Research reveals that climate change is a severe threat to the growth of Mombasa’s socio-economy, and the worst affected are women and young girls. According to Dr. Rashid Aman, the Chief Administrative Secretary for Health in Kenya, the incidences of climate health affecting the population have rampantly increased, primarily diseases such as cholera and malaria. The most vulnerable communities are women and children, who have often delegated the responsibility of fetching and preparing water.

This is evidenced by Mombasa County Public Health Director Dr. Salma Swaleh and definitive reports on the impacts of severe weather conditions, which compound the challenges to food security and, hence, malnutrition, including among young girls. Lack of clean water is also responsible for the increased prevalence of skin diseases such as infections and other diseases associated with poor hygiene among this group of people.

Moreover, due to climate-induced economic challenges that impact many homes, young girls are forced to drop out of school due to impending tasks such as housework and earning income for the family. According to Dr. Aman, fixing these challenges necessitates prompt gender-sensitive climate justice for the restoration of the women and young girls of Mombasa.

Statistics reveal that these challenges are not superficial but deep-rooted. Reduced access to clean water and sanitation policies has been evidenced by more than 60 percent of Mombasa residents living in urban informal settlements, as indicated by the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics-KNBS. This environment exposes women and young girls to greater danger of acquiring water-borne diseases. Moreover, statistics suggest that these areas have registered a thirty percent average rise in incidences of cholera over the last five years, which has been attributed to climate change and poor infrastructure.

Food insecurity is another critical problem that requires the attention and actions of governments, organizations, and individuals. According to the World Food Programme, the prevalence of food insecurity in households in Mombasa is ratcheted at 35 percent, and it affects young girls most of the time. Infant malnutrition has further escalated to 22%, and little children are the worst affected, with lasting effects on their health and intellect. This is so because extreme weather conditions have seasonal effects on local production of food crops, therefore causing havoc on food availability.

Education disruption is also an emerging issue, with children forced to work instead of attending school due to the lack of job opportunities available to their families. The Unicef survey undertaken recently observed that in the last ten years, children, especially girls, have dropped out of school due to economic reasons, with the figures showing an improvement of twenty percent. Most of them are forced to drop out of school and participate in informal Sector work or house chores, which has an impact on their future. The above trend exposes a foreboding need for general climate policies that should comprise education and economic assistance to affected families.

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