Humanitarian needs in Sudan grow as funding gap widens, IFRC warns

A family who fled conflict in Sudan sit together in a tent across the border in Chad in May 2023 where they receive assistance from the Chad Red Cross.

A family who fled conflict in Sudan sit together in a tent across the border in Chad in May 2023 where they receive assistance from the Chad Red Cross.

Photo: Chad Red Cross

Geneva/Nairobi/Port Sudan, 16 October 2023: The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) issues an urgent call for international support as Sudan's humanitarian crisis intensifies, and the funding gap widens.

Since the conflict started in Sudan six months ago, it has resulted in the displacement of over 5.8 million people within Sudan and neighboring countries. The ongoing conflict has resulted in many families dealing with the loss of loved ones, and others facing the challenges of separation. The fighting has also put immense strain on services, where people are grappling not only with severe food shortages but also limited access to clean water, inadequate healthcare and shelter.

Despite logistical challenges, the Sudanese Red Crescent Society operates in all Sudanese states, of which over 2,000 are actively responding to the crisis. Additionally, outside Sudan, Red Cross and Red Crescent national societies are operating service centers at key border points, providing vital services such as psychosocial support, medication, first aid, food and family reunification assistance to those fleeing the conflict.

Aida Elsayed, Secretary General of the Sudanese Red Crescent Society said:

“Many partners have come in to give technical and financial support, but the needs now outweigh the support, and we humbly request more assistance. Many Sudanese residents have crossed into neighboring countries to start life afresh. Those that have remained continue to experience the pain of separation, sickness, lack of food and water, and much more. We must act urgently and get support to meet humanitarian needs and save as many lives as possible.”

However, today, the humanitarian situation in Sudan is exacerbated by climate disasters, including floods and drought, as well as worsening economic conditions. In addition, there are health-related issues such as dengue and measles outbreaks, which are adding pressure to an already fragile healthcare sector. This further emphasizes the need for continued support.

Farid Aiywar, IFRC Head of Delegation in Sudan, said:

“Despite the logistical challenges that the Sudanese Red Crescent Society has experienced while implementing lifesaving activities in Sudan, the staff and volunteers are continuing to offer hope and support. They have been active within communities since the first day of the fighting.”

"While we deeply appreciate the support we've garnered, both technical and financial, from our partners, the magnitude of the current needs far outstrips the assistance at hand. A significant number of Sudanese are relocating to neighboring countries in search of a fresh start. However, for those remaining, the challenges - from family separation to health concerns and shortage of basic necessities - are overwhelming. Our collective imperative is clear: to address these surging humanitarian needs and to ensure the dignity of those affected."

IFRC launched two appeals to provide support for this crisis. A 60 million Swiss Francs appeal for Sudan to support the Sudanese Red Crescent Society in scaling up their life-saving activities within the country. Meanwhile, a regional appeal of 42 million Swiss Francs to support the humanitarian response in neighboring countries, including Egypt, Chad, South Sudan, Central African Republic, Ethiopia, and Libya. Currently, these appeals are largely underfunded with only 9 percent of the Sudan appeal and 8 percent of the population movement appeal raised.

For more information

For more information, visit the IFRC website to support the Sudan Emergency appeal and the Population Movement appeal.

For interview requests, please contact: [email protected]

In Geneva:

Tommaso Della Longa: +41 79 708 4367

Mrinalini Santhanam: +41 76 381 5006

In Nairobi:

Rita Nyaga: +254 110 837154

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