Worst Food Crisis in the History of South Sudan?

Over a million people could starve this year
as food shortage intensifies

Humanitarian organizations fear the worst this year as conditions escalate to create the most severe food crisis in South Sudan since its independence.

The Crisis

A toxic combination of extreme weather events from floods to drought, internal violence, interrupted food shipments from Ukraine, and cutbacks in international aid, set the stage for a humanitarian crisis of epic proportions this year in an already struggling nation.

Decades of civil war and genocide have left this weary people with no infrastructure, abject poverty, and a devastating lack of food, clean water, or healthcare.

Now the instability in Sudan’s capital that caused the US and other nations to evacuate their embassies has made the food shortage even more critical. With supply chains strangled from the north, and a mass influx of refugees from Sudan flooding into South Sudan, conditions threaten to push South Sudan’s food shortage to catastrophic levels.

With the recent threats compounding the nation’s turmoil, current reports estimate over 6.3 million South Sudanese people will face severe malnutrition or starvation this year – that’s 2 out of every 3 people – as the country’s population endures its fifth year of food insecurity.

Sudan Relief Fund partners on the ground confirm the situation is dire.

If it weren’t for the food Sudan Relief Fund and the donors provided, we would not have survived,” said Sister Bianca Bii, who runs Saint Bakhita Orphanage, a Sudan Relief Fund sponsored facility.

“Join me in donating to this most needed cause.” -Larry B.

The Causes

A report by CAFOD and the anti-poverty group Development Initiatives, showed humanitarian funding for food to South Sudan was cut by 38% since 2020. The UK alone cut back its budget for aid to South Sudan by a whopping 59% in 2021.

These reductions occurred when the country already faces the burden of added crises. Many in this primarily agrarian region haven’t been able to grow food for two years, as flooding destroyed crops and livestock, and a subsequent drought made planting futile.

Grain and corn shipments have been cut off from Ukraine. Further, many relief agencies backed out of South Sudan this year, citing conflicts and impassable delivery routes. The result is less food reaching the people who are in desperate need.  

Making the situation worse, volatile political and tribal conflicts spread violence across parts of the nation, forcing families to flee their homes and creating a vast number of internally displaced people. This only deepens the escalating food insecurity.

Now the unrest that erupted in Sudan’s capital, causing thousands to escape the country, threatens to have far-reaching effects that will escalate the already dire food crisis in South Sudan.  The compromised nation is in no position to withstand further food supply challenges, or take in massive numbers of refugees coming across the border from Sudan.

“[Sudan Relief Fund] is helping one of the most severe humanitarian crises today.” -Ann T.

The Victims

The vulnerable – children, infants, pregnant mothers, elderly – are the ones impacted first and hardest by malnutrition. A just-released UNICEF study predicts 1.4 million children will be acutely malnourished this year in South Sudan, particularly during the lean season from April through July when dry weather causes water to be scarce.

Sudan Relief Fund is committed to meeting the needs of desperate families during this crisis. With our networks on the ground, we are equipped to deliver emergency aid to the places and people who need it most.

For 25 years we’ve brought help and hope to people in the most dire conditions, but we’ve only been able to do this with your help.

Urgent Help Needed

Starvation doesn’t wait. Immediate intervention is needed to prevent a massive humanitarian crisis in South Sudan, to save men, women, and children from dying needlessly.

Our sustaining monthly donors are a lifeline! Recurring monthly gifts provide food and clean water for people in desperate need. Our donors who commit to a regular monthly giving amount provide reliable, steady support that allows us to buy life sustaining food and drill wells for clean water where it is urgently needed. Think of that impact – food and water that makes the difference between life and death for families – this is made possible through your monthly gifts.

“Please DONATE! I myself am a monthly donor. Join me!” -Clara S.

If you are fortunate enough to put food on the table today, please remember families who don’t know where their next meal will come from – or if it will come in time at all.

Make a Lasting Impact

We see the results every day of lives turned around with the help your monthly gifts provide. You are feeding families, saving orphans, giving emergency medical care, providing homes for refugees, and offering devastated people a new start and a sense of hope. Here are a few comments from recipients of your generosity:

“We are so grateful for your support and for helping us reach so many in our community here in the city of Rumbek.”

“Because of the generous support from donors like you and the Sudan Relief Fund, other orphans like me will have the opportunity to grow up. Your support now will help them for a lifetime andthey will never forget you.”

“Dr. Tom, plus his team and the generous donors who are behind the scenes are our heroes.”

Sudan Relief Fund is determined to stand with the people of South Sudan through the duration of this devastating food shortage. If you feel moved to help, please consider supporting this work as a sustaining monthly partner. Your recurring gift makes a lasting impact for people in great need.

Thank you for saving lives.

“Sudan Relief Fund is one of my top charities!” -Robert M.