La résilience
Women in Leer town gather grass to try to sell in the market

Teams return to Juba after challenging weeks in the field


In late August, teams of FAO South Sudan staff members returned to their offices in FAO’s Juba headquarters after spending challenging weeks in the field conducting the 13th round of the Food Security Monitoring System (FSMS) survey.  

The FSMS report provides fundamental updates on the food security and livelihood situation in South Sudan and contributes to the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) analysis.  

The FSMS provides a fresh set of data collected across the country. FAO and partners – including UNICEF, WFP, FEWS NET, the Government of South Sudan, and NGOs – deployed teams to all ten states to examine a variety of indicators on areas such as livelihoods, access to and availability of food, and food consumption. This included travelling to extremely hard-to-reach areas that had not been accessed since the beginning of the crisis. Teams often walked for hours to reach remote households, with one team even chartering a helicopter to visit isolated communities.

Francis Muana, FAO Area Food Security and Livelihood Cluster Coordinator took part in three different missions for the FSMS.  He highlighted, “There are areas that are really difficult to move in at this current time.  For some of our assessments we had to walk for miles and miles to reach every household, we moved through flooded waters to see households that hadn’t been reached before. It was very important to collect this information.”

The 13th FSMS assessment was unique because for the first time it added nutrition indicators to the assessments.  Nutrition indicators are part of the outcome indicators required for IPC analysis, but this was previously constrained by insufficient nutrition data. Nutrition information is a key element for the IPC classification of Phase 4 (emergency) and 5 (famine) and for the first time the FSMS survey incorporated weight and height measurements. The nutrition module of the questionnaire was developed by FAO, WFP, UNICEF, the Ministry of Health and the Nutrition Cluster and incorporated as an important tool for the FSMS report.

FAO and partners continue working collectively to strengthen food security information systems in South Sudan. The FSMS and IPC are tools that support the institutionalization of a robust food security information system at the national and state levels, enabling the Government to implement standardized methodologies for food security data collection, analysis, and transmission to stakeholders. The latest IPC comprehensive analysis was released on 23 September 2014.