Bonn/Berlin, 06/07/2018 — South Sudan, the world’s youngest country, becomes seven years old on 9 July. Its performance to date has been catastrophic: 90% of the population lives under the poverty line. Approximately 2.5 million people have fled to neighbouring countries since the inception of the civil war in 2013, and more than 1.7 million South Sudanese have been displaced within their own country. The United Nations projects that 7.1 million people will suffer hunger this year without humanitarian assistance.
"The people now have to go through a dreadful lean season"
The ongoing war and the accompanying violence and displacements are among the primary causes for the dramatic nutrition crisis. Recurring droughts and extreme rainy seasons are further exacerbating the situation. July is the worst month for the population, as many roads become impassable due to heavy rainfall, which makes delivering aid very complex and expensive. In addition, supplies are completely exhausted with weeks to go before the next harvest. “The people now have to go through a dreadful lean season. The existential issue of nutrition determines the families’ every thought. We are not leaving them to fend for themselves, but the first priority is a sustainable and lasting peace. Hunger and peace are closely connected”, says Dr. Till Wahnbaeck, Welthungerhilfe CEO.
Welthungerhilfe has been active in what is now South Sudan since the 90s. It supports residents of the federal states of Northern Bahr el Ghazal and Unity State with food supplies, seeding materials, drinking water, and improved sanitation facilities.
Welthungerhilfe is one of the largest private aid organisations in Germany and enjoys both political and religious independence. It is fighting for “Zero Hunger by 2030”. Since being founded in 1962, it has provided funding of EUR 3.53 billion for more than 8,900 overseas projects in 70 countries. Welthungerhilfe bases its efforts on the principle of empowering people to help themselves, which it implements with measures ranging from rapid disaster relief to rehabilitation to long-term development cooperation projects with national and international partner organisations.
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