Khartoum, Sudan - The South Sudan Common Humanitarian Fund has allocated US$ 56.5 million for aid and emergency preparedness, to enable the country respond adequately to humanitarian needs, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in a press statement Friday.
OCHA said the fund would enable South Sudan provide aid materials early enough before the rains which can make a large part of the country inaccessible.
The statement, received by PANA in Khartoum, the Sudanese capital, indicated that the allocation would directly benefit up to 1.5 million people in South Sudan.
Speaking at a ceremony attended by humanitarian workers and donors, the UN Humanitarian Coordinator, Toby Lanzer, noted that “The Common Humanitarian Fund is a vital tool to kick start the humanitarian operation at a critical time of need when the South Sudan Consolidated Appeal is less than 15% funded.”
During the 2012 rainy season, timely supply of life-saving aid to people in urgent need proved difficult as up to 60 per cent of the country became inaccessible due to seasonal flooding and poor roads.
The statement said 'Today’s allocation will boost food security and livelihoods, education, health, nutrition, water and sanitation, and protection in highly vulnerable areas. 'It will also provide nutrition to children and non-food items for those displaced by violence or seasonal floods.'
The South Sudan Common Humanitarian Fund was established in 2012 to support timely allocation and disbursement of donor funding, in order to address critical humanitarian needs.
According to OCHA, the Fund is a financing tool that channels funding towards the most urgent priorities and ensures that funds are available for rapid response to critical humanitarian emergencies.
It is managed by the Humanitarian Coordinator, with support from an Advisory Board comprising donors, the UN and NGO representatives.
To date, Australia, Belgium, Denmark, Ireland, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and the United Kingdom have all contributed generously to the fund.