Supporting the children
The conflict and underdevelopment that has plagued South Sudan for decades has taken a heavy toll on its children. Though the prospects for children appeared to improve with the country’s declaration of independence from the Republic of Sudan in 2011, optimism was quickly eclipsed when civil war broke out in 2013.
Since then, war has devastated the lives of millions. Large-scale displacement has separated many children from their families, disrupting their education and exposing them to violence, exploitation and forced recruitment into armed groups. The violence has been particularly hard on girls.
The peace deal President Salva Kiir and rebel leader Riek Machar celebrated in Juba on October 31 could mean a safer 2019 for all. But so far, a cessation of violence has remained elusive. December brought news of more than 150 women and girls seeking help after being sexually assaulted by uniformed militia. In mid-January a fresh outbreak of violence blocked humanitarian access to affected areas, ultimately sending thousands of desperate civilians to neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo.
There is a severe need for support for the children and you can help.