BY Rosemary Iwuala
The United States, through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), is providing more than $117 million in additional humanitarian assistance for the people of South Sudan, who continue to experience the devastating effects of violence, food insecurity, the COVID-19 pandemic, and successive years of widespread flooding.
This funding was made available following the drawdown of the full balance of the Bill Emerson Humanitarian Trust, an effort in coordination with the U.S. Department of Agriculture which will provide an additional $670 million in food assistance to respond to historic levels of acute food insecurity around the world.
With these funds, the U.S. government is supporting the UN World Food Program to provide food and nutrition assistance to more than one million crisis-affected people, including refugees and individuals facing malnutrition, across South Sudan.
The US said it continues to stand with the people of South Sudan as the country experiences compounding crises.
South Sudan has been confronted by a number of humanitarian challenges, including population movements and returnee integration. Seven to eight million people are projected to face crisis or worse levels of acute food insecurity during the lean season. Inter-communal violence and general insecurity also persist in several parts of the country.
In the two-and-a-half years since the people of South Sudanese origin began returning from Sudan, vulnerable communities in South Sudan have struggled to accommodate more than 700,000 new arrivals, many of whom are rebuilding lives and livelihoods with few resources from which to draw.
Confronting deteriorating economic conditions, populations are less able to cope with shocks and increasingly rely on the humanitarian community for basic food and non-food assistance. However, insecurity, bureaucratic harassment of relief organizations, logistical challenges, and Government of the Republic of South Sudan-imposed restrictions constrain humanitarian activities across the country, hindering the delivery of critical assistance to populations in need.