British Olympic champion Mo Farah is supporting a charity appeal, launched on Wednesday, for 16 million people facing starvation in East Africa, including Somalia where he was born.
The Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC), an alliance of 13 leading British aid agencies, are raising funds for South Sudan, Somalia, Kenya and Ethiopia, which have been hit by drought.
“It breaks my heart,” Farah, 33, said on his Facebook page.
“I can’t imagine how awful it would be to watch my children not having food to eat or water to drink, but this is a reality being faced by so many parents in East Africa.”
Farah, who was born in Somalia but moved to Britain as a child, is Britain’s most successful track athlete, winning gold in the 5,000 and 10,000 metres at the London Olympics in 2012 and repeating the feat in 2016 in Rio.
The Mo Farah Foundation has donated 100,000 pounds ($125,000) to Save the Children to provide healthcare and nutrition to children in northern Somalia.
The United Nations declared last month that parts of war-torn South Sudan are experiencing famine, the first time the world has faced such a catastrophe in six years.