South Sudan crisis one year on: What is the Red Cross and Red Crescent doing?

One year since the world's newest nation plunged into crisis, millions of people affected are still in need of food and essential services in order to survive. The ICRC, the South Sudan Red Cross, the International Federation (IFRC) and National Societies from across the Movement have been working hard to meet the needs of millions of the most vulnerable people in South Sudan. To mark the anniversary, we've put together a selection of the Movement's work from across the country in words and images.

The boundaries and names shown, and the designations used on this map do not imply official endorsement or acceptance by the International Committee of the Red Cross.


  • Visits to places of detention

    Throughout the year, the ICRC continued its regular visits to places of detention.

    Visits to places of detention


    Throughout the year, the ICRC continued its regular visits to places of detention, supporting detaining authorities in adhering to international standards and responding to emergencies.

    Since December 2013, the ICRC has:

    • Visited over 4,300 people held in various places of detention assessing treatment and material, with the view to facilitate detaining authorities to improve conditions when needed;
    • Supported cholera prevention measures and delivered clean water in Juba and Torit prisons, including a donation of cleaning and hygiene products;
    • Organized hygiene promotion sessions for some 1,700 detainees and staff;
    • Helped about 50 detainees re-establish or maintain contact with their families;
    • Provided a two-week food supply for over 350 detainees affected by the emergency.

    The ICRC shares its observations directly and confidentially with the detaining authorities after the visits, makes recommendations and provides support to the authorities.


  • Supporting the world's newest Red Cross national society
  • Mobile surgical teams

    It’s 40 degrees Celsius inside the small room and in the middle of it: a dying patient. Around him: surgeon Nikolai Dmitriev, an anaesthetist and two nurses. Their mission: bringing the patient back from the brink of death to life with very basic tools. This is the world of the Red Cross mobile surgical teams in South Sudan. (Medical services are supported by the Red Cross organizations in Norway, Sweden, Canada, New Zealand, Denmark, Finland and Iceland)
  • Grace finds her mother

    Grace Macon describes how she first came in to contact with the Restoring Family Links service. Re-establishing contact with her mother brought great joy to her life and motivated her to volunteer and help others find their lost friends and relatives.
  • Combating the spread of cholera

    In this video we see how the South Sudan Red Cross in Lul and Kodok, in the Upper Nile State, are treating patients who have contracted cholera, and preventing spread of the disease by educating people about how to protect themselves.
  • Communicating with affected communities

    Learning how to communicate and manage complaints during an ongoing conflict (IFRC feature)
  • Helping the disabled walk again

    In two containers in Wau, one of three rehabilitation centres in South Sudan, ICRC together with local authorities helps people who have lost limbs or face other disabilities. Mary Awach is one of them.
  • Improving sanitation

    How do you solve a problem like 80,000 people and no toilets?
  • Red Cross volunteers save lives

    When emergencies occur, the South Sudan Red Cross is one of the first to respond to the needs of the people affected. (First aid is supported by the Norwegian Red Cross)
  • Feeding the hungry from the sky

    Mary Nyakola Thoat is one of the many South Sudanese people internally displaced by the ongoing conflict. Isolated by water, her new safe haven has no land access or roads. She and her community must turn to the sky for food. (Financial and logistical support is provided by the Red Cross organizations in the United Kingdom, Switzerland and the United States)
  • Promoting respect for international humanitarian law

    As part of its mandate, the ICRC works to promote respect for international humanitarian law in South Sudan among a wide range of audiences. This includes organizing IHL information sessions or training for weapon bearers at all levels.

    Promoting respect for IHL


    In South Sudan, the ICRC continuously promotes knowledge of and respect for international humanitarian law among political and military authorities, armed opposition groups, local defence groups, communities and civil society.


    The ICRC also maintains a confidential dialogue with the parties to the conflict, continuously reminding them of their obligations according to the law, including to respect civilians and those no longer taking part in hostilities. This dialogue also encompasses discussions of concrete situations and practices.


    Since December 2013, the ICRC has delivered training or dissemination sessions on IHL to more than 1,800 members of the armed forces, armed groups and other weapon bearers.


  • Stopping the spread of an outbreak

    IFRC feature