Famine has been declared in parts of South Sudan. 100,000 people are now facing starvation, due to the combined pressures of conflict and an economy in collapse.
In an Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) update released on Monday, the Sudanese government in partnership with humanitarian agencies stated that 4.9 million people are in urgent need of food assistance. This is more than 40% of South Sudan’s population.
The World Food Programme (WFP) has also classified another 1 million people as on the brink of famine in Sudan. It is clear that major humanitarian intervention is needed to prevent this crisis from escalating further.
The UN has already warned that three other countries are at risk of famine – Yemen, Nigeria and Somalia. Hunger is also a major challenge in war-torn Syria, where more than 9 million people are food insecure. This lack of adequate nutrition may cause long-term health problems for a whole generation of Syrian children.
In Yemen, 14.1 million people are currently experiencing food insecurity. 7 million of them have no idea where their next meal will come from. Since late 2015, the number of children and pregnant women who are acutely malnourished has increased by 63%, and currently stands at 3.3 million. Acute malnutrition is incredibly dangerous, often resulting in cardiac arrest, kidney failure and death if not treated urgently.
Food insecurity means not having access to enough nutritious and affordable food. If someone is food insecure for long enough, they will become malnourished. The World Health Organisation has defined malnutrition as the gravest threat to public health globally.
Food insecurity around the world is often driven by a number of interconnected factors. Conflict in places like Sudan, Yemen and Syria damages infrastructure, disrupts agricultural production and can prevent food imports from reaching the country’s population. Violence and unrest destroy livelihoods, rendering parents unable to provide food for themselves and their children.
At Human Appeal, we believe that everyone should have enough food to eat and that every child should be able to grow up strong and healthy. We are committed to eradicating poverty and ending hunger around the world.
We are currently working to reduce food insecurity in many countries, including Syria, Yemen and Sudan, by providing food parcels to those in need of emergency assistance and helping others to become self-sufficient once more. In emergency situations, it is essential that we act fast to prevent innocent lives from being lost.
The support of our generous donors makes Human Appeal’s work possible. We need your help to stop this global food crisis from spreading further. You can feed a hungry child today.