Lead guitarist Graham Dickson travels across the country with Oxfam, to find out more about the charity’s extreme poverty solutions.

Lead guitarist Graham Dickson travels across the country with Oxfam, to find out more about the charity’s extreme poverty solutions.

Earlier this year, electro-folk pioneers Crystal Fighters announced that they would be joining forces with Oxfam. The group, who have long been admirers of the charity’s “phenomenal” work, claimed that they would be supporting to tie in with 2017’s Oxjam festival. “We will be travelling worldwide with the Oxfam crew over the course of the year, supporting with our hearts and our hands,” they revealed in a statement.

This pledge culminated in a trip to Danglia, Ethiopia, where lead guitarist Graham Dickson got a first-hand look at the work Oxfam had been doing. With his guitar in hand, the frontman visited record shops and the legendary Addis Ababa jazz club; as well as paying witness to the charity’s Honey Project work and drought response systems.

“In Ethiopia, 8.5 million people are facing severe hunger, particularly in the Southern Somali region. 700,000 are on the verge of starvation,” explains a spokesperson for Oxjam. “This number is likely to spike in the season ahead as the latest forecasts have predicted below average rains. Water levels have rapidly declined, and the widespread loss of livestock is devastating communities who depend upon them to make a living.”

“9.2 million people are expected not to have regular access to safe drinking water in 2017, while an estimated 300,000 children will become severely malnourished.”

The collaboration is a natural one, given Crystal Fighters globally minded influences and peace-loving lyricism. “I want to thank everyone that’s involved with Oxjam,” says Dickson. “It’s been amazing to see the effect it’s had in Ethiopia.”

Learn more about Oxfam’s work in Ethiopia on its official website.

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