28 March 2017

South Sudan: Unity - Famine Response Is Underway

press release

Juba, South Sudan — Humanitarian organizations are working to scale up the response in central and southern Unity, where localized famine was declared on 20 February.

Over the past two weeks, three rapid response missions have been deployed to villages in Koch (Buaw and Buoh) and Leer (Din Din) counties targeting about 50,000 people with multi-sectoral services including food assistance, nutrition, health, water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), education and child protection. Humanitarians also continue to undertake mobile response missions to provide health, WASH, and nutrition services to

remote Leer Islands. In Koch, an NGO rapid response team has deployed to scale-up the WASH response, including through repair and maintenance of boreholes and water purification, distribution of vital WASH supplies, and hygiene promotion. Partners have also ramped up emergency livelihoods action and aim to reach over 45,000 households in central and southern Unity in the coming four months. About 700 fishing kits have already been distributed in Madol, Mayendit County.

Considering the volatile security situation in central Unity, and building on lessons learned from previous responses in the area, mobile response modalities are being prioritised in locations where no stationary delivery of health, nutrition and WASH services is possible due to insecurity. Approximately 42 per cent of the outpatient therapeutic programme (OTPs) and 44 per cent

of targeted supplementary feeding programmes (TSFPs) are not functioning in Unity, with the majority of services in Koch, Leer and Mayendit suspended.

While international attention in recent weeks has focused on the 100,000 people facing famine in Unity, the overall food security situation in South Sudan is rapidly deteriorating. Some 5.5 million people are expected to be severely food insecure at the height of the lean season in July and food security experts warn that urgent action and access is needed to halt the decline.

SOURCE Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in South Sudan

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