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Polish Medical Mission continues to fight hunger in South Sudan and, in May 2018, began a strategic feeding project. The funds for assistance were provided by the Department of Humanitarian Affairs of the Chancellery of the Prime Minister.
In South Sudan, civil war and drought ruined cereal crops in 2017. Western Equatoria was severely affected by the drought disaster and the consequences of population displacement caused by armed clashes. Thousands of people migrated to Western Equatoria in search of a refuge until the end of the military conflict. Although the situation is going back to normal and most of the South Sudan area has increased the level of security, displaced families do not return to their places of residence. This is due to the post-conflict situation - their homes are burned and razed to the ground, slender supplies of food and grains for sowing are stolen, and no one can count on the local administration. In the crowded state, the number of reported cases of malnutrition in children under 5 years of age, school-age children, as well as pregnant women and nursing mothers has increased. The last IPC (Integrated Food Security Phase Classification) rate of November 2017 indicated that "Western Equatoria, and in particular some of its districts, is facing a Crisis (IPC Phase 3) and Emergency (IPC Phase 4) of acute food insecurity, driven to a large extent by armed conflict and drought, which had a serious impact on agriculture.
The partner of the Polish Medical Mission's project is an American non-governmental organization, Food for the Hungry. Polish Medical Mission will purchase 330 tons of food for nursing mothers, pregnant women and extremely malnourished mothers and children under the age of 5 in the Mundri East, West Mundri and Mvolo districts of Western Equatoria. The delivered food will allow families to sow (sorghum seeds) and securely survive several months of waiting for yields. Pregnant women, nursing mothers and children up to 5 years of age are particularly vulnerable to hunger. Lack of food can slow down the development of infants to be born and young children. Malnourished mothers and children are more likely to fall sick with bacterial, viral and infectious diseases.
As a result of the project, approximately 47,000 women and children in the worst situation regarding access to food and those at risk of structural hunger, which is the result of global acute malnutrition, will receive stable food aid. The food supplied to the beneficiaries - beans, rice, oil and sorghum seeds for sowing, will allow them to survive safely in the summer months of waiting for crops.
An additional result of the action will be preventing diseases resulting from malnutrition in children and pregnant women, which damage or slow down the development of the central nervous and endocrine systems responsible for the normal growth and development of children, infants and pregnancy.
The result of the project will also be the recovery of economic stability by the families of beneficiaries who, being protected with food, will be able to start efforts to obtain income from work on the local market.