In 2014 and 2015, IOM teams worked tirelessly to provide humanitarian assistance to displaced and conflict-affected populations across South Sudan. Efforts focused on addressing the needs of the most vulnerable through assistance in the fields of camp coordination and camp management, health, logistics, shelter and non-food relief items, protection, and WASH.
When conflict erupted in Juba, South Sudan, on 15 December 2013, IOM responded quickly to rapidly expanding humanitarian needs. IOM, already active in the country, swiftly restructured it programmes in response to the new dynamic. Missions engaged primarily in transition and recovery activities were down-sized, offices in Malakal and Bentiu were augmented to provide multi-sectors assistance in PoC sites and a new office was opened in Bor.
In parallel with these activities, IOM carried out peace building and migration management programs to protect development gains and support implementation of the Peace Agreement.
IOM HUMANITARIAN RESPONSE IN 2014 & 2015
By the end of 2015, the crisis had internally displaced an estimated 1.69 million people, including nearly 220,000 IDPs at PoC sites, and forced more than 643,000 people to seek refuge in neighboring countries.
The sudden outbreak of the war meant that thousands of civilians fled to remote areas and UNMISS peacekeeping bases for shelter. Many were faced with desperate conditions, including those at the UNMISS bases, known as protection of civilian (PoC) sites, which were not designed to host large numbers of civilians. These sites quickly became overcrowded and worsened during the severe rainy season in 2014.
Throughout the crisis, IOM has been a leader in providing assistance to IDPs sheltering at PoC sites, establishing a biometric registration systems to improve service provision; expanding the sites to relocate IDPs to areas suitable for shelters and providing multi-sector, life-saving humanitarian assistance.
Although challenges persisted through 2015, these efforts helped mitigate the very difficult and flooded conditions that IDPs endured during the 2014 rainy season and accommodate new arrivals.
In the first few weeks of the crisis, the IOM-managed RRF mechanism proved critical to helping partners fill response gaps as many aid workers had been forced to relocate from field locations. RRF enabled IOM and its NGO partners to implement quick projects in key areas, such as the Juba PoC sites.
IOM took quick action to provide clean water and health care to IDPs in PoC sites and other areas in 2014, helping to mitigate the spread of disease even during the rainy season. IOM static and mobile teams directly provided safe drinking water, sanitation facilities and hygiene promotion to 187,000 people in 2015 alone. Through more than 322,800 health consultations, IOM health teams sought to address the needs of IDPs, host communities and vulnerable populations across the country.
As the crisis forced millions from their homes, IOM and its partners sought to restore dignity and address basic needs through shelter and relief item support that reached more than 450,000 people. In coordination with UN and NGO partners, IOM helped deliver 27,800 survival kits to vulnerable populations in hard-to-reach places across Greater Upper Nile.
As one of the largest emergency operations in the world in 2014 and 2015, IOM provided critical logistics support to relief agencies, helping to move 21.8 MT of humanitarian supplies to field locations.
TRANSITION & RECOVERY & MIGRATION MANAGEMENT IN 2014 – 2015
Alongside the humanitarian response, IOM continued to operate transition and recovery and migration management activities. IOM carried out peace building and development initiatives, addressing the root causes of instability and conflict. IOM supported the improvement of migration management in South Sudan and assisted more than 700 migrants from across the continent who became stranded in South Sudan when the conflict erupted.