Save the Children, a leading child rights group, has raised an alarm about Sri Lanka’s growing hunger crisis. The country’s economic problems are now causing families to struggle to provide enough food for their kids.
Inflation’s Harsh Reality
After the government failed to pay off its debt last year, inflation shot up. Now, it’s a whopping 50%. This puts Sri Lanka among the countries with the highest food inflation rates in the world.
A survey by Save the Children looked at over 2,300 households in nine Sri Lankan districts. They found that families spent 18% more between June and December 2020. Also, almost a quarter of these homes couldn’t meet basic needs during those months.
The economic slide has forced many to make tough choices. There’s been a 24% jump in families borrowing money or buying food on credit. Even more concerning, 28% have sold personal items for cash.
Homes led by women face even more challenges. Many women now risk dangers like being trafficked or forced to work long hours. This means their kids are often left alone and at risk. The survey showed many families, about 27%, skip meals to feed their kids. But 90% can’t always give their kids healthy food. Many can’t even afford basic foods like eggs and yogurt. This forces them to choose which child gets to eat.
Most homes, about 70%, lost a lot or all their income from June to December 2020. Over half of these now earn from jobs that don’t pay regularly. This makes it hard for kids to know when they’ll eat next.
Save the Children urges quick action. They want better systems to protect people, with help from other countries. They also say aid groups should remember local customs when they help out.