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South Sudan

South Sudan

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> Africa


Population growth
2.89 %  
GDP per capita
Source: World Bank, latest available data

Italian Cooperation in the country

During these years, the Italian government financed the emergency response in South Sudan through the bilateral and multilateral channels, ordinary and emergency initiatives for a total amount of 17 million euro. A multi-sectoral regional initiative is currently ongoing to deal with the refugee emergency (AID 10876). The initiative in favour of displaced and South Sudanese refugees in South Sudan, Ethiopia and Uganda has been assigned to NGOs in order to enhance the quality of the health, protection and nutrition services, for a total amount of 3,900,000 euros. It includes 10 projects, 4 in South Sudan and 3 in refugee camps in Uganda and 3 in Ethiopia. All projects have been running since August 2017 and they will run until May 2018. Until now the impact of the initiative has been positive, both in terms of presence of Italian NGOs in strategic and in need areas and for the quality and success of the projects themselves. 
A second regional emergency initiative has also been approved - Emergency Initiative for South Sudanese Refugees and Internally Displaced People, victims of the humanitarian crisis, and for host communities (AID 11211) - aimed at improving the living conditions of the most vulnerable groups within the displaced population, refugees and host communities in South Sudan and Uganda with specific reference to food security, health, nutrition, access to water, protection of minors and the fight against gender-based violence. Specifically, the aim is to increase agricultural productivity and promote fair access to basic services, both social and health services, and to social protection and inclusion, for the most vulnerable refugees, displaced and host communities.

Strategic development document in the country

Giving the fragile and complex situation of the country, at the present time South Sudan doesn't have a Strategic development document.

The Italian strategy and the areas of intervention

The new initiative aims to contribute to the improvement of the living conditions of the most vulnerable groups of Sudanese refugees, displaced population and host communities in South Sudan, Ethiopia and Uganda, strengthening and promoting equal access to services, enhancing livelihood and supporting the mitigation of the environmental impact of the migration phenomenon. Specifically, the initiative intends to: strengthen the provision of health services, psycho-social and mental health support, educational and training services; improve and diversify livelihoods also thanks to the development of new skills; improve women social and economic conditions; ensure a fair and sustainable access to natural resources to support peaceful coexistence and social inclusion between the most vulnerable refugee population and host communities. 
The program's activities will strengthen existing on-site services in refugee camps and host communities, in close cooperation with local authorities and international partners, thus avoiding parallel initiatives and duplication.
As already stated in the 2017-2019 Ethio-Italian Cooperation Framework, even in South Sudan, the gender issue will be taken into account in emergency response scenarios, ensuring that a minimum of 5% of the activities are gender-sensitive. In fact, humanitarian emergencies caused by war or natural disasters have various serious implications on women and girls. With regard to young people, it should be noted the need of developing youth inclusive activities, going beyond the mere social and cultural entertainment, but promoting skills development, arising their interest and keeping them away from dangerous alternatives, such as the return to South Sudan to join armed groups, banditry and, last but not least, drug and alcohol addiction. In particular, the concept of idleness, a state of aimless wandering, common among young people living in the refugee camps, is increasingly being taken as a priority issue to be addressed.

Alignment with the local government strategy and harmonization with donor community interventions

The crisis of the Southern Sudanese peace process, which began in August 2015, and the consequent escalation of the conflict have led to one of the most serious refugee crisis in Africa in the last two years.
During 2017, several appeals were made by the international community; the UN Office for the Coordination of the Humanitarian Affairs, OCHA, has already elaborated a Humanitarian Response Plan in South Sudan for 2018 (Humanitarian Response Plan 2018) that requires funds for 1.72 billion USD, identifying 7 million people in need over a total population of around 12 million. The most vulnerable and priority sectors for intervention are: food security (USD 827 million), nutrition (USD 195 million), health (USD 158 million), WASH (USD 155 million), and protection (129 Millions USD).
Moreover, the severe drought that affected the whole Horn of Africa in 2017 further exacerbated the already precarious food security situation in South Sudan and in neighboring countries. The current humanitarian crisis has forced about 4 million people to abandon their homes. According to the latest UNHCR data, there are 1.93 million internally displaced people in the country and 1.83 million people have requested asylum in neighboring countries. In Uganda alone, more than 1.1 million refugees arrived in January 2018. The considerable increase in the number of refugees in the country is due to the extent of conflicts in the Eastern and Central Equatorial regions that obliged people to flee because of  starvation subsequent to the forced abandonment from the refugee camps.
On the occasion of the Uganda Solidarity Summit on Refugees, held in Kampala from 22 to 23 June 2017, the Government has expressly requested international support to finance the response to the refugee emergency.
Despite the fact that Ugandan authorities distinguished themselves for a hospitality programme among the most generous in the world (where refugees are granted full freedom of movement throughout the country, identification documents and the possibility to work), the new flows of refugees are putting a strain on social and economic balance especially in the West Nile region. To date, Uganda welcomes the highest number of refugees among the states of Sub-Saharan Africa, followed by Ethiopia; the host communities and the local authorities consequently cannot have the capacity to support this model of welcoming refugees alone, no matter how virtuous it can be.
The size and the numbers of the current refugee emergency require a regional approach to support the services that are already provided in the camps and host communities, taking into account the difficult situation of the refugee camps along the Uganda-South Sudanese border and Ethiopian-South Sudanese. Looking at the South Sudanese refugee issue from a regional perspective will allow to follow up the developments in the creation of this new refugee reception policy in the two countries, comparing the two approaches and the various lessons learned, and reflecting on potential synergies.
During the monitoring missions on the previous emergency programs (AID 10876) the representatives of both the Prime Minister's Office in Uganda and ARRA in Ethiopia expressed their appreciation and support for the current programs, as well as suggestions on the raising of other compelling needs. For example, the issue of environmental protection in the areas of refugee camps: as the Prime Minister's Office in Kampala pointed out, in areas where normally around 700,000 people used to live, nowadays the population is around two million, with a huge impact on natural resources and the environment in general, especially in terms of deforestation, scarcity of water resources, congestion of social and transport infrastructure, etc.
With its strategy Italy intends therefore to give continuity to the commitment made on the issue of displaced people and South Sudanese refugees through previous interventions (AID 10876 and AID 11211), but also to respond to a constantly evolving context, not only for the scope and numbers of the phenomenon itself, but also, and above all, for the new response paradigms that the international community and local governments want to give and which must now be followed, starting with best practices.

Goals and expected results

The expected results will therefore concern areas of intervention considered as a priority both by local authorities and by the Italian Cooperation, and in particular:
1. Increased quality and access to health services. Improved preventive, curative, nutritional health services and treatment and reference services for health emergencies (with particular attention to obstetric, pediatric and nutritional emergencies);
2. Increased quality and access to psycho-social care and post-traumatic mental health services for the vulnerable population, in particular for people with physical and mental disabilities and for victims of gender-based violence;
3. Strengthened food security and resilience of displaced persons, refugees and host communities, also implementing training actions and fostering skills development;
4. Better access to WASH services for the most vulnerable population and people with disabilities, in particular in social infrastructures (schools, hospitals, youth centers, etc.);
5. Better quality of educational offer and improved access to education, thanks to social entertainment activities and recreational-sporting-recreational activities;
6. Knowledge sharing and good practices on environmental protection promoted among displaced persons, refugees and host communities in order to adopt more sustainable lifestyles and promote a peaceful coexistence.
Direct beneficiaries will be the populations living in the areas selected by the interventions, including both the refugee and displaced population, and the host communities (both in Uganda and in Ethiopia). The initiatives implemented will therefore promote an integrated approach between the two groups, with particular attention to the most vulnerable categories such as children, single mothers, disabled persons and victims of gender-based violence.
Furthermore, activities aimed at human development of displaced persons and refugees will be preferred, also thanks to the acquisition of new skills.
Such approach is fully part of the innovative international commitments regarding the link between emergency and development, undertaken by AICS since 2016. This process has led to the approval of Resolution no. 66 of 19 May 2017 which integrates emergency and development activities, simultaneous and complementary.
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8 Show projects list

AICS development projects

€ 11,024,200

Total resources committed

€ 10,416,470

Total resources used

What is it spent for?

The purpose/sector of destination of a bilateral contribution should be selected by answering the question “which specific area of the recipient’s economic or social structure is the transfer intended to foster”. The sector classification does not refer to the type of goods or services provided by the donor. Sector specific education or research activities (e.g. agricultural education) or construction of infrastructure (e.g. agricultural storage) should be reported under the sector to which they are directed, not under education, construction, etc. read more close

By means of?

The typology identifies the modalities that are used in aid delivery. It classifies transfers from the donor to the first recipient of funds (e.g. the recipient country, a multilateral organisation, or a basket fund).  It does not track the end uses of the funds, which is addressed in the sector classification and to some extent through the policy objective markers. read more close

Main ongoing projects

Recipient € Used resources
Response to the South Sudanese complex emergency in South Sudan, Ethiopia and Uganda SS 4,900,000
Emergency Programme supporting the socio-economic integration of South Sudanese IDPs, returnees and refugees in South Sudan, Ethiopia and Uganda. SS 4,400,000
Emergency Initiative for the provision of health and protection services in favor of IDPs and the local population SS 3,892,948
Programme for resilience support of South Sudanese IDPs, refugees, returnees and host communities in South Sudan, Ethiopia and Uganda SS 3,000,000
M(H)IND – Mental Health INtegrated Development SS 2,157,450
Emergency initiative in favor of South Sudan refugees and displaced persons, victim of the humanitarian crisis, and of the hosting communities SS 1,982,992
Integrated responses for communities needs affected by dangling syndrome in South Sudan SS 1,792,990
S.A.N.I. - Food Security, Nutrition and Hygiene for Equatorial band's communities in South Sudan SS 1,560,975
The Bright Sight: NTDs prevention and Eye Health Care for persons with disabilities and vulnerable groupS SS 1,535,221
BECause Eye Care: Strengtening of ophthalmic services in Sud Sudan SS 1,505,608
Emergency Initiative for water and sanitation, food security and protection of children affected by the humanitarian crisis SS 1,392,261
Sustainable agriculture as a means for promoting food security, women's empowerment, and socio-economic development – AGREE SS 1,012,797
An integrated Response to the Nutrition Crisis in South Sudan SS 1,000,000
Food for Education Programme in Drought Affected Areas SS 1,000,000
Women empowerment and sustainable agricultural development to achieve food security SS 982,161
Emergency initiative in support of the vulnerable people in South Sudan SS 955,252
Autonomy for people with disabilities in South Sudan SS 850,859
Emergency initiative in support of the population of Lakes State, South Sudan. Local fund SS 495,604
Enhancement of Malaria response in South Sudan in the Amadi state SS 445,659
ACQ: A Culture of Quality - Training of a pool of certified microscopists, setting-up and upscaling of the National Malaria Slide Bank in South Sudan SS 438,549
Support to health infrastructures: Rumbek Public Hospita and Yrol County Hospital-lakes States SS 284,481
Technical Assistance to support the Special Reconstruction Fund SS 267,915
Technical Assistance to support the Special Reconstruction Fund SS 171,181
Support to health infrastrutures: Rumbek Public Hospital and Yrol County Hospital-Lahes States. Local fund SS 41,254
CUAMM - COVID-19 Fund for emergency CSO projects SS 25,927