Tens of thousands of people who fled the conflict in Sudan, which erupted on 15 April 2023, are now residing in Renk County. There is a shortage of clean water and basic sanitation services, as well as food and shelter.
The Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), one of the key humanitarian organisations operating in the South Sudan, has been working tirelessly to address the pressing needs of the affected population. However, limited resources and an anticipated influx of more people further exacerbate an already desperate situation.
Kennedy Ayuku, one of NRC’s emergency response team members deployed in Renk, sheds light on the dire conditions. "The food and water provided is not enough, and I have witnessed some people suffer heat strokes due to exposure to too much sunshine as a result of limited communal shelters to accommodate the increasing numbers."
NRC provides an average of 20 litres of water per day to Sudanese refugees and South Sudanese refugees now returning to South Sudan at the transit centre in Renk. Unfortunately, this falls short of meeting the needs of over 6,000 individuals outside the transit centre who lack access to clean water. Desperate, some have resorted to begging for water from hotels and shops.
With the situation in Sudan showing no signs of improvement, an influx of more refugees and returnees into South Sudan is anticipated. Some 800,000 South Sudanese refugees live in Sudan, with a quarter of them concentrated in Khartoum, directly affected by the ongoing conflict.
In light of these pressing circumstances, NRC urgently appeals to the international community and donors to ramp up their support for South Sudan. The immediate focus should be on providing sufficient resources to address the scarcity of clean water, as well as food, shelter, healthcare services and sanitation.