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South Sudan

Herd of long-horned cattle grazing outside a small village.

South Sudan is facing a state of emergency around food security and livelihoods due to longstanding violent political conflicts and the effects of climate change. 

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The joy following South Sudan’s independence from Sudan on July 9, 2011, after 21 years of civil war, was short-lived. Less than a year and a half later, the resource-rich country was plunged into a brutal civil war in December 2013, during which almost 400,000 lives were lost. Political unrest persists today.

Coupled with the devastating impacts of civil war, which has caused mass displacement of people within the country, there has been a significant depletion of available natural food resources due to environmental conditions. This has resulted in South Sudan facing a state of emergency around food security. In fact, according to the IPC, an estimated 62% of the nation's population is facing acute food insecurity.

Today, South Sudan is one of the world’s poorest countries with 8 million people, or two-thirds of the population, dependent on humanitarian aid. The country is highly vulnerable to climate change and climate-related events such as flooding, droughts, dry spells, pests and disease incidences which have become more frequent and unpredictable.


In South Sudan, VWB/VSF's program is enhancing livestock farmers' food security and livelihood resilience, specifically in Torit County of Eastern Equatoria State (South Sudan). In these regions, traditional systems of producing livestock, such as goats, cows, and camels, and poultry (chicken), contribute significantly to local communities' socioeconomic well-being and food security. In addition to serving as an essential source of income, farm animals also offer significant non-pecuniary benefits, such as the provision of manure, source of medium-term savings, insurance against crop loss, as well as to perform social and cultural functions.


We are currently embarking on the second phase of our South Sudan program, titled "Strengthening One Health Systems for the Protection of Health and Livelihoods (1-SHOP)". With generous support by Zoetis Foundation, we are committed to build upon the achievements of phase one. From March 2024 through March 2026, 1-SHOP aims to enhance the resilience of pastoralist communities in Torit County against animal diseases, including zoonoses and antimicrobial resistance (AMR). Specifically, our key objectives are:

  • To increase the use of a One Health approach at the household level to prevent and mitigate the risks linked to zoonotic diseases and AMR,
  • To establish systems at the community level to support the prevention, detection and response to zoonotic diseases and AMR risks.
  • To establish community-based systems that increase livestock productivity and strengthen livelihoods.


VWB/VSF Canada is working closely with the Government of the Republic of South Sudan and most specifically with the Ministry of Animal Resources and Fisheries, and the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security and other main central government institutions.

In addition to these institutions, we are working with local government, women organizations, civil society organizations and community structures in the states to advocate for policies, programs and activities that support community resilience and animal health, and climate resilience programs in the country.

We participate in technical working group meetings that support food security and livelihood and livestock and work collaboratively with development partners and donors such as Global Affairs Canada, the EU, UNDP, FAO, WFP, UNICEF, UNFPA, UNHCR, ILO and other UN Organizations.


Building Livelihood Resilience for Income Security and Dignified Life (2023-2024):

This year-long project was implemented in Torit County, Eastern Equatoria State of South Sudan from March 2023 through March 20024. With generous support by the Zoetis Foundation, the project empowered grassroots communities, focusing on enhancing farmer access to livestock extension services, increasing livestock productivity, and strengthening communities' capacity to prevent zoonotic disease transmission.

FIT Project (2022-2023):

Named after its sponsor, the Fund for Innovation and Transformation (FIT) by Global Affairs Canada, the "Edible Insects Farming for Improved Nutrition and Incomes" program was implemented in Jonglei State and Easter Equatoria State from 2022 through 2023. The project sought to mitigate the effects of malnutrition and gender-related challenges in South Sudan through the production and marketing of edible insects. Learn more.

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Our on-the-ground team in South Sudan

Headshot of John Gaaniko

John Gaaniko, Country Director

John Gaaniko is the Country Director for South Sudan. He previously served as a Program Management Specialist for USAID/South Sudan for ten years. John is a Development Professional and dedicated Project Manager with more than 8 years of work experience. He joined USAID/South Sudan in 2012 as a Program Management Specialist. He has prior experience working for UN Agencies in South Sudan, including UNHCR, UNOPS, and FAO for seven years before joining USAID. John has a Master of Science (MSc.),International Development, from University of Birmingham, UK.

Headshot of Taban Kaps Robert

Taban Kaps Robert, Program Manager

Taban Kaps Robert joined VWB-VSF Canada as a Program Manager on January 17, 2022. Prior to joining VWB-VSF Canada, he worked for Save the Children International as a Program Manager for two years. He also worked as a Program Manager for VSF Germany between 2019-2020. Prior to joining VSF Germany, he worked as Food Security and Livelihoods (FSL) Coordinator and Team Leader between 2012 and 2017. He holds a Master of Science in Food Security and Development from the University of Reading in the UK, and a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture from Gulu University in Uganda.

Headshot of Thom Abraham Aluong

Thon Abraham Aluong, Livestock Emergency Response Officer

Thon Abraham Aluong joined VWB-VSF Canada as a Livestock Emergency Response Officer in August 2021. He has over 5 years of experience in animal health & production, beekeeping management, fisheries, fish feeding and ponds management and food security and livelihood (FSL) techniques, principles, standards and disease identification and preventive measures.

Previously he worked as a livestock officer for the Green Belt Initiative (GBI) in Juba for 3 years. He was the Extension worker for VSF Germany between 2016 and 2017 before joining the GBI in Juba. He holds a Master of Science in Animal Health from the University of Juba and a Bachelor of Science in animal production.

Headshot of Deng John Atem

Deng John Atem, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer

Deng John Atem joined VWB-VSF Canada as a Monitoring and Evaluation Officer for VSF Canada in May 2021. Prior to joining VSF, he worked for Action Against Hunger (ACF) USA as a Food Security and Livelihoods Program Officer between 2020 and 2021. He also served as a Forestry Officer for Relief International between 2016 and 2017.

Deng holds a Bachelor of Environment and Natural Resources Management from Ndejje University in Uganda and a Diploma in Natural Resources Management from the University of Juba, South Sudan.

Headshot of Rosemary Moria

Rosemary Moria, Administration and Finance Officer

Rosemary Moria Ephraim joined VWB-VSF Canada in South Sudan as the Administration and Finance Officer in 2016.

Previously, she served as Administration and Finance Assistant for Pact Sudan between 2014 and 2015.

Rosemary holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting and Finance from Ndejje University in Uganda.

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