1. Background & Rationale
The political crisis and conflict in South has been ongoing since 2013. The dynamic and multi-faceted nature of the South Sudanese displacement crisis has created significant challenges for humanitarian information management. Accessibility and security issues within South Sudan have impeded systematic data collection efforts, limiting the effectiveness of humanitarian planning and implementation, whilst displacement within and out of South Sudan remains highly dynamic, with 1.9 million South Sudanese internally displaced and 2 million seeking refuge in neighbouring countries.1 As the crisis continues to evolve, it is becoming increasingly important to fill information gaps in a systematic manner to promote a more effective humanitarian response.
The Greater Nyal area, located in Panyijiar County of Unity State, has been a place of security and refuge for people who have been displaced from Leer, Mayendit and Ayod Counties as a result of conflict and food insecurity. With the escalation of conflict in central and southern Unity in 2015 and 2016, IDPs Leer, Mayendit, and other counties fled to islands in the swamps northeast of Nyal Town in Panyijiar County as well as to Nyal Town. Deteriorating food insecurity in central Unity led to a further IDPs influx from Leer and Mayendit into the Greater Nyal area, with famine declared by the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) in these two counties in February 2017. 2 These displacement trends were also recorded in the months of January to March by REACH Port Monitoring.3 Whilst Nyal town had a relatively consistent humanitarian presence as of February 2017, little information is available on the humanitarian situation of IDPs who have fled to Garbek, located two hours by vehicle northwest of Nyal town. Humanitarian partners operating in the Greater Nyal area have raised the need for an assessment in Garbek given reports of a large IDP presence in the area and the absence of a static humanitarian presence in this location.
In order to fill this critical information gap and assist humanitarian actors operating in the Greater Nyal area to make more informed decisions about the scale, scope and location of the response, this assessment seeks to understand the displacement patterns, humanitarian needs and service access gaps of IDPs and host community members in Garbek. To ensure that this data is directly informing humanitarian response planning in the Greater Nyal area, data will be shared through formal coordination structures such as the Nyal Humanitarian Partner Coordination Forum covering the Greater Nyal area. Further, this assessment has been designed with methodological input from partners to ensure it fills most urgent information gaps and partners have committed to proving REACH logistical support in carrying out the assessment.