South Sudan: 9 Hunger Facts

South Sudanese women carry boxes of food home from a recent WFP distribution.

(Copyright: WFP/George Fominyen)

Over a million South Sudanese have been displaced by the on-going conflict since December. WFP continues to provide food by any means possible to those in need. Here are nine key facts about the hunger crisis in South Sudan.

1. South Sudan ranks as the 11th country in the world for child hunger, with 32.5% of children under the age of 5 underweight.

2. Even before the current conflict, 50.6% of South Sudan’s population lived below the poverty line.

3. South Sudan was making progress against hunger before the conflict. Experts said that 'food security' in 2013 was better than it had been in 5 years.

4. With over a million people forced from their homes, the conflict is reversing some of the progress made recently.  

5. Disruption to trade routes and food markets mean the conflict is increasing hunger even in areas not affected by the fighting.

6. About 60% of South Sudan is inaccessible by road during the rainy season, complicating relief efforts by WFP and other agencies.

7. Around 803,000 people are displaced inside South Sudan. Having lost their livelihoods, almost all need food assistance.

8. Some 270,000 people have fled to neighbouring countries since December. Between 4,000 and 5,000 pour into Ethiopia weekly, many with high rates of malnutrition.

9. WFP has reached more than 502,000 people affected by the conflict so far.  In total, WFP aims to assist roughly 2.5 million people in South Sudan.

If you would like to support WFP's emergency operations in South Sudan,  make a donation here.

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Sources: WFP Emergency Food Security Assessment (Feb.2013), Central Intelligence Agency, UN News, Reliefweb.