Fighting has ravaged South Sudan for the past three and a half years. More than 6 million people—45 percent of the population—are facing extreme hunger. As many as 7.5 million people now need humanitarian assistance.
More than one million of these people are children who are acutely malnourished. As many as 3.8 million people have fled their homes; with nearly 2 million seeking safety in other countries.
Oxfam has been providing clean water and sanitation services to help prevent the spread of diseases—like cholera and diarrhea—which can lead to malnutrition and prove fatal. In 2016, we helped more than 600,000 people across the country. We are currently providing emergency food to 415,000 people, and clean water and sanitation to 140,000. Famine was declared in parts of South Sudan in February; 100,000 people were living in famine, and 1 million more were on the brink. Since then Oxfam and other humanitarian organizations have raced to respond, and we have helped prevent famine from spreading—for now.
Conflict has intensified across the country. Almost everywhere the situation is getting worse. About 25,000 people in the areas previously declared in famine are still facing catastrophic levels of hunger. They have run out of ways to cope and survive. Their lives depend on aid. Although the rains are now beginning and people can start planting, it will be months until farmers can harvest crops. Hunger is will get worse until the end of July—the peak of South Sudan’s lean season.
We need to scale up those efforts, and we urgently need your support to help save lives.