Sudan + 2 more

UNICEF Sudan Humanitarian Situation Report - End-year 2021 (1 January - 31 December 2021)



• UNICEF provided 3,279,990 conflict, flood, and epidemic affected people (including 1,699,450 females and 1,639,950 children) with access to lifesaving basic water services in 15 states of Sudan.

• 260,376 children suffering from Severe Acute Malnutrition were identified and provided wasting management interventions with a cure rate of 91 per cent.

• In 2021, UNICEF Sudan faced a $139,5m funding gap for its humanitarian response. Relevant financial contraints resulted in reducing lifesaving assistance and leaving substantial needs of children of Sudan unaddressed.

Overview and Partnerships

UNICEF’s 2021 Humanitarian Action for Children (HAC) appeal for Sudan requires $211 million to address the new and protracted humanitarian needs of the population. The prevailing political and economic fragility in Sudan is further complicated by the turmoil of the COVID-19 crisis.
UNICEF Sudan would like to take this opportunity to express its sincere appreciation to the donors that supported UNICEF’s 2021 HAC appeal in Sudan. The HAC 2021 has been supported by the European Union, the governments of Canada, Germany, Japan, Sweden, the United States, small grants from UNICEF National Committees, as well as by significant contributions from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) and the Sudan Humanitarian Fund (SHF).
At the end of 2021, UNICEF faced a $139,466,055 (66 per cent) funding shortfall for its humanitarian response (aside from COVID-19 response requirements), curtailing relief efforts against flooding, disease outbreaks, conflict, and the nutrition crisis, and leaving education, health, child protection and water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) needs unaddressed.

Situation Overview & Humanitarian Needs

Sudan is home to 14.3 million vulnerable people - including eight million children enduring inter-communal violence, flooding and epidemics including COVID-19 - and remains under protracted pressure from conflict, economic hardship, and nutritional deprivation. Institutions remain weak and unable to provide lifesaving services to those displaced or otherwise affected. It is estimated that one in three people will be in need of humanitarian assistance during 2022. This is an increase of 800,000 people compared to 2021 and the highest number of people in need during the past decade. 1 Following the 25 October Coup D’état, the reappointment and finally the resignation of the ousted Prime Minister, Sudan faced a high turnover on staff holding key governmental positions while civil unrest has impacted humanitarian operations and has led to grave violations of Children’s Rights. Protests have erupted across Sudan and while protesters are committed to peaceful demonstrations, the use of excessive force by security forces, has resulted into countless injuries – including 13 children – and the death of 56 individuals including 9 children. 120 child rights violations were recorded while Gender-based violence has also increased, recording 13 cases of women being raped on the aftermath of protests. Children are disproportionately affected due to the closure of schools and their high participation in protests to advocate for a civilian rule.
In 2022, floods affected 314,000 people, destroying 15,540 houses and damaging another 46,500 resulting in displacement of the vulnerable population, an increase of children affected by waterborne diseases and disruption of education as schools are often utilized to accommodate displaced population. It is indicative that despite the disruption of reporting mechanisms, reported Malaria cases reached 2,368,611, Hepatitis E Virus suspected cases reached 1440, suspected dengue fever in the country increased to 869 cases. As of 24 December, the overall positive to COVID-19 cases have increased, reaching 86,901 suspected cases, 46,166 confirmed cases and a fatality rate of 7 per cent.
As of December 2021, the economic situation continues to deteriorate. According to Sudan's Central Bureau of Statistics, the inflation rate has reached 318 per cent, impacting the purchasing power of the people, eroding wealth, and lowering of living standards. Coupled with the scarcity of fuel, bread, medicines and other basic goods resulting from the blockade of the main port of the country, this has further increased the hardship, causing more people to fall below the poverty line. Moreover, the removal of subsidies on basic commodities such as electricity, has led to an increase of the cost of living whereby thousands of people will be unable to meet their basic needs. Finally, despite the significant progress Sudan made in 2021 to access international financial resources and to receive funds worth of $2 billion from the World Bank and $ 2.5 billion from the International Monetary Fund, flow of foreign currency is at stake due to the current political instability, heightening the risk of nutritional deprivation for children.
The 2022 Nutrition sector Humanitarian Response plan was completed estimating 1.8 million to be targeted representing about 46 per cent of the total 3.9 million sector people in need (PIN). However, the treatment coverage for SAM without medical (320, 864) and with medical complication (49,021) were 58 per cent and 55 per cent of their respective PIN. The corresponding treatment coverage for moderately malnourished under-five children (1,017,088) and Pregnant and Lactating Women (422,500) was 48 per cent and 47 per cent respectively. Overall, the estimated beneficiaries for all lifesaving nutrition interventions were lower compared to those estimated in 2021, partly due to budget ceiling guidance that all sectors were to adhere with. The sector estimated that total of US$159.9 million of which 76 per cent is earmarked for life saving interventions will be needed for humanitarian nutrition responses in 2022.
The current political situation has driven UNICEF Sudan to revisit its business model in several aspects of its modus operandi. UNICEF is reviewing its programmes in the current context with a focus on lifesaving and life-sustaining programmes despite previous efforts to build sustainable national systems independent from humanitarian aid. In response to the military takeover, many donors froze development aid to Sudan.
Yet, Sudan and the international community needs to safeguard the humanitarian, development and peace nexus approach. There is a need to ensure that systems for delivering for children of Sudan at scale remain resilient.