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More South Sudan Joint Response

Wau and Jur River County (Western Bahr El Ghazal)

The lasting effects of the outbreak of conflict in Jur River and Wau County in April 2017 have continued to negative impact on Food Security and Livelihoods, access to WASH services and Protection in Wau and Jur River counties. As a response, Dorcas and Help a Child (Red een Kind) have worked the last two years across seven communities to strengthen their livelihoods with agricultural inputs, income generating activities and livestock. The same people also have received access to safe and clean water through the rehabilitation and/or drilling of hand pumps and latrines in their communities. In addition, Child Friendly Spaces have been set up in the same communities as well, to ensure that children can play together and develop themselves in a safe environment.

Peter (37): 'They constructed a Child Friendly Space'

'When I had to flee my home town Bentiu, I only rescued my family’s lives. My animals and all my possessions I left behind. I used to be a businessman, but I lost everything I owned. My family and I resettled in Wau, where we were just given a piece of land to settle, but there was no clean water, food, health facility or school.
I kept on trying my best to labor and support my family. I cut trees and grass and sold them to earn a leaving, until last year when the people from the SSJR project came to support us. They rehabilitated our water point and also taught people how to use it and how to use water at home. They constructed a Child Friendly Space where children can play together and get used to each other. The most interesting is that children in this village, including mine, have learned how to live together, eat together and play together. They used to hate each other thinking others are the enemy.'

"For me personally, they first gave me 2 goats that helped me to provide milk to my 5 children. I’m really happy that the goats have reduced my stress of looking for children’s milk. The children used to cry a lot but now they are doing better. In the meantime, my goats have increased to 4. This year, they gave us an ox plough, tools and seeds and trained us to grow crops. I used the seeds and tools to plant my own sorghum. I’m also a member of a farmer group and we used the ox plough to plant groundnut for everyone’s benefit because we don’t have enough land for each of us to plant differently since we are displaced people.
At least my family’s life has a difference compared to when we had no help. But the challenge is that there are 725 households in this area, all IDPs who need help, but just about 250 households are benefiting from this help."

Amer (30): 'At night we slept in the bush'

"My mum, my under aged children and I were displaced in the 2013 Bentiu fighting. We walked for about one month before reaching Wau. It was very difficult for us. We really suffered from hunger and tiredness and were in constant fear for attacks. At night we slept in the bush.
When I settled here, life continued to worsen since we came with nothing. We left all our animals and belongings in Bentiu, so we had nothing to start a new life. Like many women, I don’t know the whereabouts of my husband. When we fled, we left him in Bentiu. In this area most of the women live just like me. Some lost their husbands and others don’t know where their husbands are. It’s a tragedy for us.
I fetched firewood and sold them to buy food so that we could survive. When the people from the SSJR project came last year, they selected me to be part of the project and I was given two goats. Now I have 5 goats."

"Since we were traumatized, the children and I were given psychosocial support to forget what had happened. Now my children can play freely with others at home. I’m also a beneficiary of seeds, tools and training conducted to grow crops. Last year, I cultivated and harvested 7 bags of groundnut. I sold them to buy clothes and basic needs for our family. As per now, I have opened a small business. I sell tea and bread to sustain a living with my family. This year, my mother is also a beneficiary of seeds, tools and training. At the end of this year, we’ll be able to sell her products to expand our business and support our family.
I’m just worried about the education and health facilities for the children and us. There is no school and no health center for us here... I’m also worried about the future if there is no continued support."

Rebecca (40): 'My daughters feared criminal activities such as raping'

'When we came here, we fetched water from the Open River and stagnant well. This water is dirty, with worms and crystals inside, just dark or colored. Besides, fetching water was only possible during the rainy season; during dry season, water was scarce and it took us about 5 hours to get water for use at home. And since the water points were far away, it was difficult for my daughters to help me fetch water. They feared criminal activities such as raping.
At many times, my family members and I have stomach problems like diarrhea because of drinking or using dirty water. And in their search for water, two children have even drowned in the river.'

'When the people from the SSJR project came, they renovated our broken borehole. We, women and our daughters, now feel free from fear of rape because we now have water close to our home. It’s about a 5 minute walk, so no more long distance walking.
Additionally, we learned how to keep water clean. We were trained on sanitation and hygiene. When we fetch water from Open River or well, we were told to boil the water, filter it and then add chlorine before using it. I was also trained on how to manage the water point (borehole) so that it doesn’t quickly break; and if it breaks we immediately report so that it’s being repaired. I thank the people who helped us to get clean water and protect our family from deadly diseases.'