Somalia is in a state of crisis, and at least 26 people have died of starvation in the country’s southern region of Jubaland in the past 3 days, according to Radio Mogadishu.
This comes as the country suffers one of the most extreme droughts in its history.
In a monumental effort, former Vine star Jérôme Jarre and Spartanfam Movement founder Chakabars Clarke launched an appeal for funds.
The idea was simple: Only one airline flies to Somalia's capital Mogadishu – Turkish Airlines – their aim was to raise $1 million (£800,000) to buy out the plane, fill it with food, and fly the whole thing to Somalia for provide immediate relief.
To do this they started a viral campaign #TurkishAirlinesHelpSomalia, and set up a GoFundMe page.
In less than 24 hours they met the target.
Indeed 50,000 people contributed, and Turkish Airlines quickly got wind of the project and have been offering their support:
It's really happening...
Not one for small gestures, Jarre decided to call his supporters the Love Army, and upped the stakes to $2 milllion (£1.6 million).
Using the hashtag #NominatedForSomalia, actor Ben Stiller got involved. He challenged the people who already donated to nominate three friends to make a donation - no matter how big or small - for the mammoth social movement.
Stiller nominated Lewis Hamilton, Emma Watson and Cara Delevingne:
Though they have not yet set up a charity account, Stiller allowed them to use his foundation.
As of Tuesday 21 March they are less than £50,000 off their target.
The first million is earmarked to fill a 60 tonne cargo plane with food and will leave on 27 March.
In a Facebook video about their incredible achievement, Chakabars said:
The people did this… People’s humanitarian relief mission.
He reiterated that “every cent” of the money raised will go directly to the those in Somalia who are in need, and some of the shipment will include:
- Highly nutritious food for people who are starving
The second million, he continued, will go towards taking water trucks to the people most affected by the drought.
Ben Stiller will be accompanying them to Somalia, where he will document the relief efforts.
This is an ongoing project and you can donate here.