WFP South Sudan Country Brief, January 2019

In Numbers

19,143 mt of food and nutrition assistance distributed*

US$ 3.38 m cash-based transfers done*

US$ 215.8m six months (February-July 2019) net funding requirements

1.92 m people assisted*

*in December 2018

Operational Updates

Although food security has improved slightly with the harvest in September 2018, insecurity and economic collapse have destroyed lives and livelihoods, leaving some 5.3 million people in need of humanitarian assistance to survive from January to March 2019, according to projections from the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC). Of concern is the 36,000 people that will also be in Phase 5 (Catastrophe), experiencing famine-like conditions in this period.

WFP has extended the Level 3 (L3) emergency response in South Sudan until January 2020. The extension in time considered an analysis of the scale, complexity, urgency, capacity and reputational risk involved with the crisis. Notwithstanding the recent peace agreement, the level of complexity of the operation remains high, as the situation is still fluid and tenuous. Food security and nutrition indicators continue to be at critical levels, as well as the number of refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) in need of assistance. Whist overall access has improved, insecurity in specific areas continue to prevent WFP and other humanitarian organizations from reaching the most vulnerable.

WFP and UN partners are undertaking a scenario mapping as part of the preparedness plan for the possible return of refugees and IDPs in the country, considering the context of the peace agreement. The plan keeps in mind the short window of opportunity for returnees who wish to engage in agriculture and require inputs by latest April, due to the start of the rainy season in May.

WFP South Sudan Logistics Team was voted WFP’s Best Team of 2018 globally. In 2018, the team pushed the boundaries of humanitarian logistics on the back of exceptional services.

Among other things, the reduction in over-reliance on air and enhanced use of surface transport, such as road and river, resulted in significant cost-efficiency gains amounting to USD63 million, whilst moving higher volumes of food commodities to assist the most in need in South Sudan.

Food Assistance for Assets (FFA): In 2018, WFP provided support to over 100,000 households in all regions of the country through its FFA programme. Through FFA, households received 6 months of food assistance or cash transfers as they created community based or productive assets. Nearly 40,000 hectares of staple crops and vegetables were cultivated, 900km of community access roads and dykes were constructed, and 65 multi-purpose water ponds were built, along with other assets to improve food security and build resilience to shocks and stressors.

At the same time, participants received training to create and maintain assets, as well as messaging on cross-cutting issues like nutrition, gender based violence, and HIV awareness.

The WFP-led Logistics Cluster continues to be an active member of the National Task Force for Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) Preparedness, and is taking the lead of the Logistics Ebola Task Force along with the World Health Organization (WHO). Through WFP, the Cluster is working with the United Nations Humanitarian Response Depot (UNHRD) to procure four ambulances to support EVD preparedness activities. Together with UNHAS, the Cluster and WHO also reviewed the communications procedures used to alert and arrange for transportation of suspected EVD samples, in an effort to streamline processes and ensure flexible and timely response.

WFP enhanced its beneficiary authentication process throughout 2018, which led to an estimated reduction of USD 2 million in operational costs during the second half of 2018. In 2019, WFP plans to continuously expand the use of this mechanism to ensure that the intended beneficiaries receive their food assistance. WFP authenticates beneficiary identities through SCOPE, its biometric system for registering and identifying beneficiaries.

Source: World Food Programme