The number of Afghans in need of humanitarian assistance has nearly doubled in the last year, reaching 18.4 million people -- or half the population. Even before the recent increase in violence, hunger and malnutrition had reached alarming levels, with more than 5 million people experiencing emergency levels of hunger.
Our immediate priority in Afghanistan is the safety of our team members as we continue to assess the developing situation. We will resume providing assistance as soon as it is safe to do so and we have more clarity of the operational context. Our focus will be on meeting the urgent needs of Afghans who have been displaced from their homes, many of whom are living without shelter and access to basic necessities.
Mercy Corps has worked in Afghanistan since 1986, partnering with communities to improve the quality of life for Afghans, from improved sanitation services to agriculture and vocational training. Last year, we reached over 370,000 people across the country.
We remain committed to supporting the people of Afghanistan, and thank all of our supporters who have helped us deliver lifesaving humanitarian relief to millions of people in Afghanistan and around the world.