Medair continues responding to humanitarian needs in Juba, South Sudan
Media Relations Officer
Lausanne, July 22, 2016
Two weeks ago, on July 8, conflict erupted in Juba, capital city of South Sudan, causing the displacement of about 36,000 people at the height of the fighting. Approximately 14,900 people remain displaced and have taken refuge in churches and UN Protection of Civilian sites.
In the past week, Medair supported the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) in reaching 2,300 displaced people with essential non-food items (bed mats, mosquito nets and blankets) in UNMISS’ Tongping Protection of Civilians site, as well as another 8,967 people who took shelter in the internally displaced communities site in Don Bosco and at St. Theresa’s church.
Moreover, Medair has installed hand-washing stations and rehabilitated two boreholes near St Theresa’s church to supply approximately 5,000 people with safe drinking water and help prevent the spread of disease; we are also planning latrine decommissioning and construction, as well as solid waste clean-up in Don Bosco for internally displaced communities. Following the fall-out of violence in Juba, we are also equipping local clinic staff in supporting women who have experienced sexual gender-based violence, as well as facilitating access to emergency supply of essential drugs for a key local health facility.
In the wake of recent violence, South Sudan is faced with an outbreak of cholera, as confirmed by the Ministry of Health; the outbreak is believed to have so far claimed the lives of six people. More than 130 suspected cases have now been reported in Juba, where Medair has pre-emptively trained 90 Health and Hygiene Promoters (HHP) in cholera-prevention messaging. Since suspected cases began to emerge, we have also provided the HHPs with training in active case finding and referral for treatment. Alongside coordination with partners and the Ministry of Health to assess needs and gaps in the cholera response, Medair is implementing water and sanitation services in some of the most affected communities in the city.
Curtis Tyler, Medair’s Deputy Country Director in South Sudan, arrived in Juba a couple of days ago to be involved in the emergency response: “I wasn’t sure what to expect but I knew that the small team that had been here during the fighting was beginning to respond to the critical needs of people in the city. However, I wasn’t prepared for the incredible response from our national staff. Those staff who could began coming into work just days after the height of the fighting, ready to work and go into the worst affected areas of Juba to provide support. Their commitment and dedication, and that of the whole team, literally brings me to my knees in gratitude.”
The safety of our personnel remains a priority in this dynamic environment. Medair’s emergency response team is partnering with other humanitarian actors to respond to the needs in Juba and is continuing to support project activities across other locations in South Sudan.
Medair continues to call on all parties to the conflict to uphold the cease-fire to facilitate humanitarian action. We hope and pray that lasting peace will come to South Sudan along with renewed hope for the future.
South Sudan became an independent nation on 9 July 2011. Medair has been present in the region since 1991, and since the beginning of the conflict has been assisting thousands of affected people through nutrition, health, water and sanitation, and emergency shelter. You can find out more about our work in South Sudan on our website
Media enquiries should be directed to: Paola Barioli, Press Relations Officer, +41(0)78 635 30 95
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Medair is an international humanitarian NGO that provides emergency relief and recovery services to families made vulnerable by natural disasters, conflicts, and other crises. For more information about Medair, click here. This release was produced with resources gathered by Medair field and headquarters staff. The views expressed herein are those solely of Medair and should not be taken, in any way, to reflect the official opinion of any other organisation.