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We can still help victims of famine

IT is difficult to expect people here to prise open their wallets and give to charities working overseas when families are already under huge financial strain. That is the reality many organisations face as they try to cope with the unfolding crisis in the Horn of Africa.

Since the famine began in Somalia, it is now estimated that 30,000 children have died in that country alone. The disaster is quickly spreading to neighbouring Ethiopia where many more are at risk.

The scale of the crisis is frightening, and aid organisations are struggling to convey just how worrying the situation is.

When images of the starving come on to our screens, it is all too easy to switch channels.

But in a world made smaller by technology and much improved communications, it's much more difficult to ignore what is going on.

Many people here have very little to spare. But 26 years ago, when the country was also deep in recession, we were the most generous donors per capita to Live Aid.

It's time to call on that generosity and humanity again.