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South Sudan crisis appeal

South Sudan is facing a catastrophic humanitarian crisis driven by years of a brutal civil war. 

Between July and September over six million people were trying to cope with significant levels of hunger.

Donate to South Sudan 


Updated: 11/12/18

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Bruno Bierrenbach Feder/Oxfam

George* sits on his mother's lap as health personnel take his measurements to determine his nutrition level. Nyal, Unity State, South Sudan  - March 2017.

*Name changed

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The situation

South Sudan is facing a catastrophic humanitarian crisis driven by nearly years of a brutal civil war.

Civilians have been attacked, and schools and hospitals have been looted and burned. Tens of thousands of people have been killed. The fighting has forced nearly four million people - one in three - from their homes. As they flee, people lose their possessions, crops and income, and often get stranded in places where there aren't enough facilities to support tens of thousands of new arrivals. Most of them are women and children, who are particularly vulnerable to the risks that come with finding aid and services away from their communities.Many also retreat to very isolated areas, keeping themselves far away from fighting, but also from aid.

In South Sudan 4.5m people are severely food insecure and 7m people are in need of some sort of help.

Over four million have now been forced from their homes, with 2.4 million people having fled to neighbouring countries and approaching two million displaced within the country.

The people of South Sudan are used to coping with adversity but in over 30 years of working in these affected areas, Oxfam has never witnessed such dire need. 

A recent report has shown that the town of Pibor is in famine conditions. This means that a significant number in the town are dying of hunger. Many in the town have resorted to eating grass and weeds to stave off hunger.

Kieran Doherty

Mobile water source at Imvepi Settlement, Uganda. 

More than one million people have fled the brutal conflict in South Sudan and taken refuge in neighbouring Uganda in places like Bidibidi the largest refugee settlement in the world - home to over 270,000 South Sudanese refuges.

Oxfam's response 

Oxfam has reached 900,000 people with humanitarian assistance in the past year

We build and repair boreholes and wells, test quality levels, treat water, and train people to look after and maintain their own water supply. Oxfam is preventing the spread of diseases like cholera  by constructing safe, sanitary latrines in camps and settlements, as well as community and household toilets.

More than one million people have fled the brutal conflict in South Sudan and taken refuge in neighbouring Uganda thanks to a generous refugee policy by the country's government. Bidibidi in Northern Uganda is the largest refugee settlement in the world - home to over 270,000 South Sudanese refugees.

In Bidibidi Oxfam and it's local partners have been providing clean drinking water to around 200,000 people. Oxfam is also constructing latrines and supporting hygiene promotion activities in schools and communities. Here Oxfam is creating water systems that will last for 20 years as it is expected that many people who have fled to Uganda will remain there for decades.

Oxfam has seven humanitarian bases across the South Sudan and teams are running life-saving activities in other locations where the need is greatest. We are:

  • Providing regular emergency food distributions to over 415,000 people. 
  • Providing clean water, safe sanitation facilities, essential hygiene items and promoting good hygiene practices to help keep diseases like cholera at bay.
  • Providing vouchers for canoes so that people sheltering from the conflict on islands in the swamps can get to the help they need
  • Supporting the most vulnerable people to produce food for themselves and develop ways to make a living, for example by providing livestock or training, tools and seeds .

Oxfam is also responding to the refugee crisis in Ethiopia, Democratic Republic of Congo and Chad.

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Photo: Pablo Tosco

Oxfam distributes WFP food at Mingkaman where 58,000 people forced from their homes have arrived in search of food, water and safety from the violence.

Robert Fogarty

Margaret, from Magwi county, lost her son Pasquali in Mundri and her daughter-in-law in a bus hijacking. She now takes care of their two children in Mangaten camp, Juba.

Robert Fogarty

Further information

History of Oxfam in southern Sudan

Oxfam has been present in southern Sudan since 1983, providing humanitarian aid to people affected by conflict, drought and floods, as well as long-term development support to vulnerable communities. 

Other ways to help