South Sudan: a forgotten crisis

By November 17, 2015
GAIN_little girl refugees south sudan
(Photo courtesy of Steve Evans via Flickr)

South Sudan’s history, though short, is full of violence. (Photo courtesy of Steve Evans via Flickr)

South Sudan (MNN) — It may be easy to overlook South Sudan’s crisis amid a plethora of larger global conflicts: ISIS expansion into Europe, the Middle East refugee dilemma, ongoing tensions in South Asia, etc.

For South Sudan’s people, war is a never-ceasing reality.

Approximately 2.4 million people have been displaced or driven from the country. Nearly 4 million people remain “severely food insecure,” according to the UN.

Thousands of kids – somewhere around 16,000, to be exact – have been used by the government and rebel forces as child soldiers.

Global Aid Network (GAiN) is in the middle of it all, sharing Christ through word and deed as they help people in need.

Background check: South Sudan

The world’s youngest nation has yet to witness a prolonged period of peace and stability. From the nation’s bloody birth to present-day, South Sudan has endured wave after wave of armed conflict.

WikimediaCommons_South Sudan map

South Sudan is the world’s newest country.
(Wikimedia Commons)

In January 2011, the people voted to break away from Sudan and form a new nation that would officially become South Sudan seven months later.

Sudan has a difficult time letting go, though; battles ebb and flow into 2013.

As 2013 came to a close, a new war sprang forth – this time, the turmoil came from within as South Sudan’s president accused the vice president of trying to overthrow him.

A chain of broken ceasefires, failed peace agreements, and horrific war crimes followed.

See a full history here.

GAIN’s involvement in South Sudan also began in 2013 and continues today. The project began with aid delivery to a teaching hospital in Bor, and now includes helping refugees in a camp near Juba.

South Sudan’s present prognosis

A thorough and lengthy investigation by the African Union uncovered multiple atrocities at the hands of South Sudan leadership, and the pursuit of justice is underway.

Earlier this week, a so-called “Hybrid Court” got the official backing of the European Union, though most signs on-the-ground point to an extension of the conflict.

GAIN_little girl refugees south sudan

Sisters stay warm with a blanket provided by Global Aid Network .
(Photo courtesy GAIN via Facebook)

There may be no end in sight to South Sudan’s violence, but GAiN is helping war victims endure today and find hope for tomorrow.

In recent days, a GAiN team visited ministry partners serving in a refugee camp near Juba, South Sudan. Approximately 4,000 displaced people and refugees take shelter in this camp.

What follows are some of the updates shared by team members on GAiN’s Facebook page:

“Residents occupy tents provided by the government of South Sudan with help from the United Nations. Each measures roughly 20×30 feet and houses 4-6 families (20 people on average). Unfortunately, the already crowded tents cannot hold any more people.

“Scores of homeless refugees remain homeless at the camp. At night and during storms, they take shelter in the crude school building and clinic waiting area, but are forced to leave, usually to a spot out in the open somewhere.”

A gift of $7 provides refugees with a blanket, keeping them warm and dry when storms arise.

“Monyluk,” a refugee himself, is using his abilities to help those around him. GAiN and its partners are coming alongside to support his efforts – will you?

GAIN_Monyluk south sudan

Dr. Monyluk, surrounded by patients.
(Photo courtesy GAIN via Facebook)

“Monyluk fled his home city to escape the violence in his home town and He found his way to a refugee camp, where he took on the responsibilities of camp physician. He struggles to serve more than 4,000 residents of the camp with virtually no equipment and no medications.

“‘Most of the illnesses I see can be prevented,’ he said. ‘Clean water and mosquito nets would eliminate more than half of the cases here.’

“While help is on the way, including a long-term solution for water, GAIN wanted to help right away. Thanks to the generosity of donors, we were able to purchase blood pressure cuffs, stethoscopes, and an otoscope for the clinic. Our donors also supplied mosquito nets for at least 25 families.”

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