Millions of Children at Risk in South Sudan Food Crisis

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Nyapuoch holds her daughter Nyanian*, 10 months old, as she is tested for malnutrition at Save the Children's outpatient clinic in Akobo, South Sudan. The red marking on a MUAC (Mid Upper arm Circumference) band indicates she is severely malnourished. Nyanian is just one of 2.5 million children in South Sudan who are in a state of acute food insecurity, struggling to access the basic food they need to survive. * indicates that name has been changed to protect identity. Photo Credit: Jonathan Hyams/Save the Children
Nyapuoch holds her daughter Nyanian*, 10 months old, as she is tested for malnutrition at Save the Children's outpatient clinic in Akobo, South Sudan. The red marking on a MUAC (Mid Upper arm Circumference) band indicates she is severely malnourished. Nyanian is just one of 2.5 million children in South Sudan who are in a state of acute food insecurity, struggling to access the basic food they need to survive. * indicates that name has been changed to protect identity. Photo Credit: Jonathan Hyams/Save the Children

WESTPORT, Conn. (May 28, 3014) — Save the Children is launching an appeal to raise funds for South Sudan, where children and families face a growing risk of famine. Across the world’s youngest nation, 2.5 million children are struggling without the basic means to survive.

In the states worst affected by fighting– Jonglei, Upper Nile and Unity – children have been forced to drop out of school to search for food. Many are now suffering from diarrhea, a potentially fatal condition when children’s bodies are weakened by hunger. In Akobo, families are arriving at Save the Children feeding clinics having walked for hours.

"Since the war started, we have been living in suffering," said Nyatot, the mother of a severely malnourished three year-old boy. "By next month, I am worried there will be no food for me and my children. We may have to travel [to Ethiopia] to get help."

Immediate action is needed to keep the situation from deteriorating rapidly. With the rainy season underway, roads will soon become impassable and aid agencies will struggle to deliver lifesaving food supplies and malnutrition treatment.

"Save the Children’s feeding clinics are dealing with an influx of severely malnourished children, brought in by terrified mothers, many of whom arrive after walking for miles,” said Pete Walsh, Save the Children’s Country Director in South Sudan. “We urgently need to raise funds to provide families with lifesaving food supplements…They need help and if we wait any longer, I fear all hope will be lost.”

You can help Save the Children continue to provide aid to malnourished children by donating to the South Sudan Children's Relief Fund.

Save the Children gives children in the United States and around the world a healthy start, the opportunity to learn and protect from harm. We invest in childhood-- every day, in times of crisis and for our future. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

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