World Concern community bank - South Sudan
You’ve probably heard about the crisis in South Sudan. It started in December with an attempt by rebels to overthrow the country’s fledgling new government. The result has been utter chaos. Widespread violence and fighting have affected nearly every region of the country, including the areas where we’re working, and hundreds of thousands of families fled their homes in search of safety.
“It’s so sad. People are really traumatized … They won’t go outside, because they are too scared to get shot anyways. What can they hope for?” said Samuel, who is among the displaced in South Sudan.
This is just one of the many challenges faced by the people of this struggling nation.
Before the conflict broke out, severe flooding impacted our ability to access Lietnhom, cutting off families from outside help for months. It’s been a challenging six months here, but there are signs of progress, and I wanted to share those with you, so you know your support has made a difference.
Since our last report, families in Lietnhom made great progress in their farming techniques, growing more plentiful crops, and raising much healthier livestock. This has improved incomes, and brought more members to village savings groups. Lietnhom’s community bank, founded and run by village residents, grew from 300 to 963 members.
Another exciting update is that parents in Lietnhom began special savings accounts specifically for educating their children. The accounts are called “akuny miith,” which means “school children account.” These families understand the value of education, and want to see their children succeed. With your help, hundreds of children attended school this fall in Lietnhom.
More than 60 blacksmiths and tinsmiths were trained and graduated from our vocational training program. And 70 additional youth learned job skills like motorcycle repair and masonry.
A group of women were empowered to support their families with groundnut machines and training –essentially making and selling homemade peanut butter for income. This kind of transformation is new, and it will last in a community where families previously had little hope for the future.
New businesses are opening up as the village economy improves, and this village is truly being transformed. Thank you for being a huge part of this transformation!
Using a groundnut machine in South Sudan.