‘No escape’ from disease

09:10 03 August 2012

The family Deborah spoke to during her visit to South Sudan.

The family Deborah spoke to during her visit to South Sudan.

Archant

Honiton woman visits South Sudan to see first-hand the conditions and problems faced by those living in the newly independent country.

One in nine children die before the age of five in South Sudan - one of the highest child death rates in the world.

Those are the shocking statistics revealed by Honiton woman Deborah Underdown, who recently visited the country with Care International.

“It is a very poor country. Being newly independent, there is so much that needs to be done - the infrastructure there is very limited and they have under 10 hospitals in the whole country,” she says.

“I’ve never seen people living in such a dire situation.”

Deborah, who is a press officer for the charity, said 800,000 people are in need of emergency assistance including medical care and clean water in South Sudan.

It is estimated that only 25 per cent of people in the country have access to health care services.

However, Deborah fears the situation could get worse as the country enters its rainy season.

She says there has already been a rise in waterborne diseases.

“What struck me was there was no escape from it. We have all this rain in this country but at least we can shut the door and be safe. People there are living with it up to their ankles in mud and children getting sick,” adds Deborah.

She describes meeting a mother-of-five and her family, who were living in a makeshift shelter with ten other people and one bed. Her seven-month-old daughter had died of malaria - all she wanted was a mosquito net.

“Seeing the children covered in mud and putting their hands in their mouths, I thought ‘Don’t do that you are going to be sick’.”

Deborah told the Midweek Herald that the country could potentially get cut off as a result of the rain and travel on the roads becomes very difficult.

On her visit she also travelled to a refugee camp where she met people returning to South Sudan as well as those fleeing from conflict in other parts of the world.

Just over 400,000 people have returned to the country.

The charity is making sure the country has enough medicines, adequate housing and access to clean water and other supplies.

A medical facility was also set up providing treatment and immunizing children against polio, tuberculosis and measles.

“With the situation we need more money so we can do more. There are so many places in crisis - there is a lot of need,” adds Deborah.

“The money people give can actually save someone’s life. It could immunise a child against diseases, give mosquito nets so a child doesn’t die of malaria. Real things money can buy mean a child does not die.”

For more information about Care International visit www.careinternational.org.uk

0 comments

Other News Stories

Yesterday, 09:00

A move by Budleigh Salterton Cricket Club to a new ground in Copp Hill Lane should receive backing from district chiefs, members have been told.

Read more
Friday, December 19, 2014
Exeter Magistrates Court

An Exmouth bus driver has been disqualified from driving after causing a collision.

Read more
Thursday, December 18, 2014
Exmouth TSB staff Louise Grant and Ben Pollard with Branch Manager Derek Sowden are pictured presenting a cheque that will total £540 to Richard Cousins and John Arnold from Hospiscare. Ref exe 2551-50-14. Picture: Simon Horn.

Staff at an Exmouth bank have got on their bike for Hospiscare - to round off a successful year of charity fundraising.

Read more
Thursday, December 18, 2014
Exeter Magistrates Court

An Exmouth couple could be disqualified from keeping dogs after they breached a control order.

Read more

Local Weather

Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 12°C

min temp: 11°C

Most Read News

Photo Orders
Competitions
Subscriptions
Facebook
Family notices
Exmouth Journal E-edition

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Exmouth Journal e-edition today E-edition
Exmouth�s trusted business finder