The situation in South Sudan remains uncertain. According to UN OCHA, 5.1 million people are in urgent need of assistance. 4.8 millions of South Sudanese are threatened by acute hunger. Reasons for this are the consequences of armed conflict and El Niño.
Hope for a peaceful life in South Sudan was buried at the end of 2013 during violent unrest. Only two years after independence from Sudan, armed conflicts between the followers of President Kiir and former Vice-President Machar resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands. Since then, there has been recurrent fighting, violence and flight of refugees.
The people are in fear, 2.3 million have fled. The conflict parties do not lay down their weapons, even during important periods such as the sowing season. The result: Once again, many fields were unable to be cultivated. And this is in a country in which 90 percent of the population live from agriculture. The urgently-needed harvests in July and August are failing. Jobs and other income sources are scarce. Food prices are rising, the rate of inflation is high. The South Sudanese people are spending, on average, more than 80 percent of their money on food.
Effects of the ongoing crisis in South Sudan
- According to the UN, 4.8 million people are threatened by hunger, that is a third of the population. 686,000 of them are children under the age of five.
- 30,000 of them are at acute risk of death due to starvation.
- 2.3 million people have left their homes, 1.7 million are displaced in their own country, 665,000 fled to neighbouring countries. They seek protection in safer areas or refugee camps. However, the conditions are poor, there is a lack of tents, water and hygiene. The majority of refugees are dependent on food distributions.
- More than 1.3 billion US dollar are required to avert another crisis and end hunger (2016 South Sudan Humanitarian Response Plan).
How we are helping the people in South Sudan to overcome the emergency situation:
- Emergency aid: Welthungerhilfe is providing refugees in camps with emergency shelters, fresh water, hygiene measures and food.
- Rural development: Together with the population, we are building dykes and planting trees, in order to have better control of the annual floods and, thereby, secure the harvests. Smallfarmers are learning which cultivation methods improve their yields, are receiving seeds and agricultural tools, as well as support in the care and medical provision of their livestock.
- Education: Together with Alliance2015 we are building schools and centres for small children.
The misery is caused by the violence, the population is bearing the suffering
The origins of the great misery in South Sudan lie in the violent conflict. People have been living with near perpetual armed conflict since the 1950s – more than 2.5 million of them have lost their lives. The cycle of hunger, violence and hardship will not be broken without structural changes. The victims, though, are among the population. More than eight million people still need external support. Help them and make a donation!
The aid measures are financially supported by the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development and the German Corporation for International Cooperation GIZ.