Famine has been formally declared in parts of South Sudan, the United Nations said, warning that war and a collapsing economy have left some 100,000 people facing starvation there and 1 million more people classified as being on the brink of famine. The formal declaration of famine in South Sudan means that people have already started dying of hunger.
Read a pastoral statement from the Bishops of South Sudan (Radio Vaticana)
How Catholic Relief Services is helping
The situation is the worst hunger catastrophe since fighting erupted more than three years ago between rival forces – the Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA) loyal to President Salva Kiir and the SPLA in Opposition backing First Vice-President Riek Machar.
Urgent action is needed to prevent more people from dying of hunger.
According to the country's government and humanitarian agencies at work in the region, 4.9 million people - more than 40 percent of South Sudan's population - are in need of urgent food, agriculture and nutrition assistance.
The total number of food insecure people is expected to rise to 5.5 million at the height of the lean season in July if nothing is done to curb the severity and spread of the food crisis.
How You Can Help - Catholic Relief Services in South Sudan
Despite very trying circumstances in the world's newest nation, Catholic Relief Services’ (CRS) reach is widespread. CRS helps feed hungry people and works with community members to improve water and hygiene systems. CRS collaborates with the Catholic Church and other organizations to support peacebuilding and reconciliation in this fractured nation. But this work cannot be done without you.
Your prayers are also urgently needed. We offer this resource for your reflection: