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Our Work

South Sudan
USAID is helping the new country of South Sudan build toward a peaceful, prosperous future
Timothy McKulka/USAID

Agriculture and Food Security

Agricultural development is seen as the engine that will not only diversify South Sudan’s economy, but also reduce poverty and food insecurity. USAID is taking a holistic approach to spurring agricultural development in South Sudan—improving inputs (seeds and fertilizer) for farmers, strengthening market linkages, improving the conditions that promote private sector investment, and improving infrastructure to facilitate trade.

Democracy, Human Rights, and Governance

Following South Sudan’s independence in July 2011, USAID democracy and governance assistance seeks to strengthen government institutions and human capacity at the national and subnational levels, while supporting active engagement by South Sudanese citizens with their government at all levels.

Economic Growth and Trade

The people of South Sudan are among the world’s poorest, with more than half the population living on less than $1 per day.  To improve economic opportunities in South Sudan, USAID is helping to develop a commercial agriculture sector, improving infrastructure, and assisting national and local governments with land policy issues, natural resource management, and wildlife conservation.


After enduring two decades of civil war, the people of South Sudan have one of the lowest literacy rates in the world, with only 27 percent adult literacy. USAID’s education program in South Sudan supports gender equity, interactive radio instruction, capacity building for education ministries and teacher training.

Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment

USAID promotes gender equality and women’s empowerment across its portfolio, focusing on increasing women’s social, economic and political status. In South Sudan, USAID works with national and state education ministries to eliminate gender bias in the education system, and has strengthened women’s participation in political processes and policy formation, such as land policy.

Global Health

The vast majority of the population of South Sudan lacks access to essential health services and to clean water and sanitation, conditions that contribute to compromised health status for people. Mortality rates are exceptionally high, particularly for mothers, infants and children. USAID currently delivers primary health care services in 14 counties in all 10 states of South Sudan, and is improving access to clean water and sanitation.

Water and Sanitation

Only 48 percent of South Sudanese have access to potable water and only 14.6 percent of the population benefits from proper sanitation. USAID is expanding access to clean water and sanitation, and increasing community capacity to maintain water and sanitation facilities.

Working in Crises and Conflict

Unresolved issues between South Sudan and Sudan such as oil revenue sharing and border demarcation continue to cause tensions and conflict between the two nations. South Sudan also faces internal conflict related to lack of economic opportunity and competition over scarce resources. USAID is helping to mitigate conflict in South Sudan by helping to develop and improve livelihoods and improving the effectiveness of local government institutions.

Last updated: August 12, 2014

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