Years of recurring civil wars for over four (4) decades in South Sudan have produced a shocking number of disadvantaged groups including the orphans, widows widowers and disabled. Currently, South Sudan is crippled by a rampage despair and poverty which is continually escalating to problems of street children, drugs addiction, prostitution and crimes of an immeasurable magnitude. In fact, UNHCR has estimated that nearly 1 million people have fled South Sudan for the neighbouring countries of Uganda, Sudan and Kenya, many of whom have been made widows and orphans by past and current civil wars. These widows and orphans make up the bulk of the vulnerable people in the world’s youngest nation.
Unlike Australia and indeed most of the Western nations, disadvantaged South Sudanese are left to fend for themselves as there are no institutions put in place to cater for them. Traditionally in South Sudan, it is the adult male family member who takes responsibility for the security and general well-being of his family. However once he is gone, the whole family is left in perilous living conditions that the only way out is a wish to die.
Being a widow leaves a South Sudanese woman susceptible to domestic violence from in-laws or male relative who inherit them. It leaves a woman at the mercy of sexually transmitted disease, destitution and sometimes a widow works cheaply or as servant for their rich relatives and neighbours. The fate of the orphan is precariously the same as that of a widow. Orphans are currently sniffing petrol, involved in stealing, illicit drugs and in all sort of criminal activities which they did not chose to be part, but are circumstantially forced to make living from.
Children are the irrefutable hope of every family and every nation. Children deserve better treatment; children need to be hopeful and they deserve a better life. This is why iHOPE is stepping in to give them that hope. Through education, a child can learn to be self-reliance. Through education, a child is able to acquire skills, experience and qualification which enable him/her to enjoy life. When a child is growing healthy and happy, the world as a whole is happy. Please join us to give the South Sudanese orphans and widows the hope and peace they are longing for.