South Sudanese refugees are brought together and connected by the ritual of food. Yet over 200,000 refugees in Bidibidi need continued support.
Already, food rations have been cut by 30%. During the days after food distribution, most households are able to prepare three meals a day: breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Within a few weeks, however, in anticipation of the next food distribution and due to shortages, most families resort to a single meal a day. For some, nothing.
According to Comfort Cynthia Achayo, the World Vision Deputy Food Assistance Manager, if the situation is not addressed, the joy, happiness, and social cohesion that food brings to the South Sudanese refugees will also deteriorate.
“Food does a lot more than being a meal. Refugees use food distribution points as meeting points with friends that they haven’t seen in a while, to catch up, and conduct trade and business. They also use food to celebrate various social and family functions. Having the food further reduced affects all this,” Comfort says.
We have empowered and supported the refugees to establish kitchen gardens which allows them to grow vegetables in small gardens in their backyard to supplement the food ration that WFP [World Food Programme] gives them through World Vision” adds Comfort.