Christian Solidarity International (CSI) has distributed essential foodstuffs and farming equipment to thousands of families in South Sudan in an effort to prevent widescale hunger.
In the second half of June, a CSI team spent six days distributing grain, ground nuts and hoes in Northern Bahr el-Ghazal State on the border with Sudan. A separate team from the Catholic Diocese of Twic County, Warrap State, carried out distribution in Warrap and Abyei states. All these areas are home to former slaves liberated by CSI.
“The food distribution was done in June to fill the hunger gap and help families to farm as the rainy season started early this year”, reported project manager Franco Majok. He expects farmers to be able to harvest their first crops by mid-August.
In Northern Bahr el-Ghazal State 3,000 families received 20 kg each of ground nuts and 5,740 families benefited from 25 kg each of sorghum. A total of 300 families were given a hoe.
“All the communities which received food were so happy”, said Majok, adding that besides now having enough to eat the people also have seeds they can plant ensuring higher crop yields next year.
Impact on grain price
According to Majok, another beneficial aspect of the food distribution is that grain prices drop as those who receive sorghum from CSI will not then go to the market to buy food. “Even though not everyone receives food aid. CSI helps them indirectly by stabilizing the prices of sorghum in local markets. It is a huge help to every family”, he explained.
Majok points out that it is local community leaders and county officials who decide what communities should receive food aid. In its distribution CSI prioritizes families who have no cows or goats and who cannot afford to buy food.
CSI was the only NGO distributing food in Northern Bahr el-Ghazal in June, said Majok, who appreciates the many donations that make CSI’s work possible: “Many thanks to CSI donors who help us to get food to the people of South Sudan”.