Press release

Greening: clean water and shelter for South Sudan crisis

Britain will provide a new package of humanitarian aid for those fleeing violence in South Sudan.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

A teenager displaced by violence washes clothes in a basin in South Sudan, January 2014. Picture: K McKinsey/UNCHR
A teenager displaced by recent violence washes clothes at the compound of the UN Mission in South Sudan. Picture: K McKinsey/UNCHR

International Development Secretary Justine Greening has announced that Britain will provide a new package of clean water, shelter and urgent medical care for more than 150,000 people fleeing violence in South Sudan.

Leading British and international charities, with support from the UK’s Rapid Response Facility, will deliver the supplies to families across the country, including in the northern Unity and Upper Nile states.

According to the UN, 200,000 people have already fled their homes as a result of the conflict and are in need of clean water, shelter and medical care.

Announcing the funding, Justine Greening said:

“British aid is opening a lifeline to many families who have been forced from their homes in South Sudan. The sheer scale of people seeking refuge from the fighting means we have got to act fast. We must get shelter and medical care to those in need and prevent waterborne diseases like cholera from taking hold.

“The UK’s Rapid Response Facility has allowed leading charities to quickly scale up their response to this unfolding crisis.”

The UK Government’s £6 million commitment to the Rapid Response Facility will support key agencies already operating in South Sudan: Concern Worldwide, International Medical Corps, International Rescue Committee, Oxfam and World Vision. It will ensure:

  • 150,000 people have access to clean water and sanitation facilities. This will include providing water purification tablets and building separate latrines for men and women in new camps

  • 50,000 people get basic shelter from tarpaulins and shelter kits

  • 50,000 people have access to essential items such as cooking utensils, blankets and mosquito nets

  • emergency medical response units can provide trauma care, primary and secondary health care, nutrition advice and help prevent disease among 100,000 people in Pochalla, Akobo, Malakal and Awerial

  • better sanitation facilities and lights are installed in emergency camps to keep people safe

  • vulnerable girls and women are protected by creating ‘safe spaces’ for them to get medical and psychological care

Individual charities will be responsible for delivering relief items and coordinating their response on the ground.

The funding from the Rapid Response Facility is part of the UK Government’s £12.5 million response to the current crisis. This funding is already providing emergency healthcare, tents and other vital supplies to thousands of people.

Notes to editors

  1. DFID has provided £12.5 million of humanitarian funding since the start of the latest crisis. A breakdown of this assistance is available online:

  2. In 2013, DFID allocated more than £60 million for humanitarian activities in South Sudan.

  3. This is in addition to our ongoing long term development work in South Sudan which is targeted at primary education, treatment and prevention from malaria, tackling hunger, supporting security, and providing health care and nutrition.

  4. The Rapid Response Facility (RRF) was established in March 2012. The RRF is a network of pre-approved specialist aid organisations and private businesses who can rapidly deliver emergency medical, water and sanitation assistance to affected people. It enables the UK Government to commit to rapid humanitarian funding to these pre-qualified partners. Responding swiftly in humanitarian disasters ensures that more lives are saved and suffering reduced.

  5. Before the current crisis, South Sudan was already one of the poorest countries in the world with more than half of the 8.3 million population living below the poverty line.

Published 10 January 2014