South of Egypt is Africa’s largest country, Sudan. Since independence in 1956, the country has struggled with civil war and unrest due to tensions between North and South. Since 2011, the southern part is a country of its own – South Sudan. However, tensions between the two countries have continued, and at the end of December 2017, there was unrest again.
The constant unrest has weakened Sudan economically and socially. Although the country is rich in oil and benefits from trade agreements with rich oil states such as Qatar and Saudi Arabia, inflation is high, which in 2017 led to a further increase in the price of food. Fortunately, the last year of average good weather conditions has led to an increase in agriculture. Despite this, the year has been difficult for an already vulnerable population, and especially for children and young people. Child mortality and violence against children are still common and many children do not go to school. In addition, youth unemployment remains high.
Some results from the past year
Plan International works to strengthen children’s and young people’s rights to life, development, protection and participation through our programs in Sudan. During the past year, we have played a leading role in protecting children who have fled South Sudan. In addition, we have ensured that 9,929 members in 37 communities have better livelihood opportunities by developing savings and loan groups. It has given families better incomes!
Security and protection
Family-friendly zones in refugee camps
More than 100,000 refugees, whose children are children, have fled South Sudan to the White Nile south of Sudan. Plan International has established family-friendly zones in refugee camps in the area, where children and families receive emergency help and psychosocial support. We have also started long-term projects to take care of children’s health and development. As part of this work, we arrange courses in food cultivation and fishing. The courses reached 3,298 of those living in the refugee camp and provide families with better livelihoods in the future.
Builds wells for safety and health
We are very happy with the new well, now we finally have clean and safe drinking water.
School student on the river Atbara
Clean water is crucial for good health, but accessing clean water can unfortunately be a challenge in Sudan. The water sources dry out in the summer and many are forced to go far to find water. This means that girls in particular, who are traditionally responsible for fetching water, are exposed to risks and also take up time that could otherwise have been used for the important school work. Plan International has therefore built wells in villages and schools around the country that will ensure improved health, reduce hygiene-related diseases and be accessible at a safe and close distance for those who fetch water.
The first women with veterinary knowledge
For the first time, eight women have received training from veterinarians. Now the women can help others in the area with their sick animals. Together with local authorities, Plan International has made it possible.
In rural Sudan, it is difficult to find a veterinarian, they are almost always in the cities, and vaccination campaigns have not been regular. This has led to outbreaks of diseases among livestock. To provide more access to veterinarians, Plan International, together with a veterinary department, has trained ten people in animal health and care. Eight of them are women, two are men. Rewida Habeeballa is 20 years old and one of those selected to meet the needs of her area.
– I am very happy to have received the trust from my community. I left my home village and met my new colleagues to learn more, it was really a good education, she says.
– Previously, I did not know how to take care of animals, but now I can examine them and identify and diagnose symptoms of various diseases. I can also inspect meat.
After the training, Rewida Habeeballa returned to her home village with lots of new knowledge and was welcomed by relatives who congratulated her on the new role. Said Rabha Fadullmola El Tonsa is one of the villagers who turned to Rewida for help. Her goat seemed to be in great pain, but after an examination it turned out that the goat was pregnant.
– Rewida instructed me how to do and after five days the goat gave birth and everything went well. I am so happy! Thanks to Reweida’s support, my goat is still alive and my children can drink milk. Finally we have a qualified veterinarian in the village, says Said Rabha Fadullmola El Tonsa.
Facts about Sudan
Population: 39 million
Life expectancy: 64 years
Infant mortality rate: 45 per 1000 births
Proportion of children starting school: 54.5%
Proportion of women in parliament: 30.5%