Aerial bombs destroy homes and farms causing isolated severe food emergency situation
A Hidden Hunger
Drought, Starvation, and Malnutrition
When people talk about the famine death toll, South Sudan is featured, however, millions of people just over the border in Sudan's Nuba Mountains are facing severe food emergency in isolation.
The situation is made even more desperate by the fact that survivors who trekked for months to seek refuge in South Sudan have been constantly turned down due to instability, and overcapacity in the refugee camps.
Most are forced to go back to the war-torn Nuba Mountains, where they starve to death. Those who survive are forced to live in trenches and caves as their homes, farms, and schools have been destroyed by aerial bombs.
The government uses food as a weapon by destroying farmland and crops leaving people currently experiencing malnutrition, starvations, and food-borne poisoning and infections
Climate change has contributed to the change in weather patterns affecting the crops, fluctuating from poor rainy season to floods ruining the little crops that some people were able to plant through irrigation. Casualties of this brutality have mostly been women and children who die on a daily basis.
Our survey found that 90 percent of respondents had no access to food or water in the caves where they've been hiding. 97 percent had, in the previous month, at least all members of the household go for weeks without eating at least once a day.
Nuba, Darfur, and the Blue communities are surrounded by battle lines, effectively isolated as delivery of basic services by the Sudanese government and the international humanitarian organizations stopped since 2011.
Our organization is one of the handful humanitarians delivering critical and life-saving assistance in the area under extremely challenging circumstances under high levels of insecurity.
Structures in compounds in the Nuba mountains damaged by a bomb dropped on their location.
Infections and Poisons in Food
Infections and poisons consumed in food have been a method of assassination, siege, and terrorism used by the Sudan government against civilians. The contemporary capacity to grow, harvest, process, and market foodstuffs are stifled by daily attacks. The food system just like the healthcare system has been vulnerable to natural and artificial interference and contamination.
As a natural vehicle for pathogenic microbes and their toxins, food and water contamination has been used for select target populations in Nuba Mountains, Darfur, and the Blue Nile as the methods of terrorist government interested in revenge and displaying their superiority.
The soldiers disrupt the life of locals by contaminating water supplies with agents like Cryptosporidia. This has led to outbreaks of diarrheal diseases shutting down our schools and disrupting other activities in the community. Our community with centralized kitchens and set menus have been a prime target for food bioterrorism.
Why they use food as a weapon
1. Illness and disability; widespread fatalities
To disrupt daily life
Contamination of food is an inefficient method of killing large numbers in a set of large varieties and choices
2. Emergency food relief
This has been an ideal situation for making food a lethal vector of chemical or infectious agents because they only allow humanitarian aid that comes through government ports.
3. Food poison targets
Localities in the Nuba Mountains, Darfur, and the Blue Nile.
Displaced and refugee camps dependent upon a single supplier of only basic foodstuffs has been a splendid target for a terrorist government who've produce mass casualties relatively easily.
We have learned that as a general rule, the longer and the narrower or more restricted the food path is, the greater the vulnerability to food weapons. We collect and distribute our food separately to avoid a single government chain.
Helping small farmers in the Nuba Mountains, Darfur, and the Blue Nile increase production has been an effective way to combat global hunger and poverty.
Many people in the Nuba Mountains are too poor to buy animals and, therefore, prepare their fields with hands. Planting and harvesting are also done by hand.
The difficulties in increasing production for these farmers include unproductive soil, plant diseases, pests, and drought. In many cases, these small farmers trek miles to the nearest water source and are only able to bring enough water back to produce small amounts of crops. Lack of access to improved seeds or fertilizers and pesticides further add to their hardships, in addition to a lack of reliable markets and little available pricing information.
One important aspect of furthering our agricultural production in these war zones has been pushing for empowerment and equality of women in these areas. Women produce over 9 percent, however, they are not given equal access to credit which could enable them to afford quality seeds, fertilizers, and water pumps to increase their production and providing more food to their communities. Giving them access to these resources leads to a significant increase in agricultural productivity.
Other ways that we aid these small farmers include investment in technological innovations, such as cheap solar-powered water pumps and giving farmers better access to information about the markets.
Our innovations and policies aim to lift them out of starvation and malnutrition.
Out of their rise from poverty comes new consumers and contributors to the global economy, benefitting not just developing countries, but developed ones as well.
The victims of genocide not only live under constant aircraft bombing for years without international intervention, but also, live under earnest lack of food, water, and medical care for decades. Millions were ethnically killed leaving more than 5 million currently in the internal displacement camps without access to basic necessities like food and water.
Our food pharmacy consists of pantry focusing on healthy perishables that don't last on shelves but are good for patients. We collect donated food to cater to millions in the war-zones.
We work with our health clinics to provide vulnerable patients with food and nutrition education. Some of these victims have fled into different refugee camps in South Sudan while hundreds of thousands of survivors, mostly women and children are stranded at the border, unable to enter the refugee camps, which are at double their capacity.
pantry focuses on healthy perishables that don't last on shelves but are good for patients. They offer fresh fruit and vegetables all year round. They now feed over 7,000 people a month and derive some of their produce from the hospital's rooftop garden.
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