Skip to main content
European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations
South Sudan



It is estimated that 75% of South Sudan’s population requires urgent humanitarian assistance in 2022.

Thousands of people are living in famine-like conditions, and undernutrition is at critical levels. There are over 2 million South Sudanese refugees in neighbouring countries.

The EU is a long-standing donor of humanitarian aid in the country and continues to support humanitarian projects helping South Sudanese refugees in the region.

What are the needs?

In February 2020, South Sudan formed a transitional government of national unity after 6 years of civil war. Progress in the implementation of the peace agreement has been slow.

The country’s security remains extremely fragile. It is compounded by lasting local ethnic conflicts, increasing youth mobilisation, widespread violence, and serious human rights abuses against civilians.

Conflict, insecurity and natural hazards have displaced nearly 4 million people since 2013, with many forced to flee multiple times. More than 2 million people are internally displaced. An additional 2.2 million are refugees.

Some 8.7 million people are estimated to require humanitarian assistance in 2022, due to the combined impact of violence, climate change, economic crisis and the pandemic.

Around 8.4 million people are expected to face severe food insecurity, the highest level of food insecurity since 2013. A further deterioration of the situation is expected in the lean season as of April 2022.

Malnutrition remains a major public health emergency, with more than 1.8 million children and pregnant and breastfeeding women acutely malnourished in 2021 – the highest number in 3 years.

Increased insecurity hampers humanitarian access. Some 267 incidents involving NGOs in 2021  resulted in 15 NGO fatalities and 42 NGO staff injured. In 4 of the incidents involving NGOs, 5 staff members died while on duty.  

Map South Sudan

How are we helping?

In 2022, the EU allocated over €71.7 million for humanitarian actions covering the response to food insecurity, violence and floods across South Sudan. This also includes €3 million supporting static and mobile interventions on education in emergencies, focusing on primary education for newly displaced and out-of-school children.

Food insecurity and malnutrition are at a record high across the country. The EU contributes to reducing excess mortality and morbidity through emergency food assistance and nutrition interventions, including in hard-to-reach areas.

In addition, EU humanitarian funds support addressing critical humanitarian needs through emergency lifesaving activities, particularly in new shocks.

EU-funded humanitarian projects also provide protection assistance to displaced people and those affected by trauma and widespread violence, including children, women and girls. The protection of children and women is a priority for the EU given the extreme levels of violence and the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, EU humanitarian partners in South Sudan have adopted new measures to keep beneficiaries and staff safe, while continuing to provide life-saving assistance to vulnerable communities.

The EU continues to strongly support principled humanitarian assistance and advocate for the protection of humanitarian workers and their safe and sustained access to all parts of the country.

In addition, in 2021, the European Commission provided €100 million in humanitarian assistance to support the rollout of vaccination campaigns in countries in Africa with critical humanitarian needs and fragile health systems, including €2.8 million for South Sudan.

Last updated: 10/05/2022
Picture: © FinnChurchAid/Maria de la Guardia, 2019

Facts & figures

8.3 million people in need of humanitarian assistance (HNO 2021)
Around 7.2 million people need emergency food aid between April and July (IPC December 2020)
Over 1.6 million people are internally displaced (OCHA)
Around 2.2 million South Sudanese refugees are in neighbouring countries (UNHCR)

EU humanitarian funding:
over €71 million in 2022
more than €759 million since 2014