Aid for Africa Endowment Scholar Examines Why Malnutrition Persists in Sudan

Why does malnutrition remain high in rural South Sudan despite humanitarian intervention? Aid for Africa Scholar Jacqueline Lauer is spending the summer months in rural South Sudan trying to find the answer.

Lauer is undertaking research in two remote areas in Warrap State in South Sudan with support from the Aid for Africa Endowment for Food and Sustainable Agriculture, a partnership between Tufts University’s Friedman School and Aid for Africa.

According to Lauer, the humanitarian community has been supporting farming in the region with seeds and tools, but malnutrition persists. Lauer believes it is because these interventions have not addressed the root causes of malnutrition. “In order to understand these root causes, it is necessary to have a better understanding of food habits at both the household and community level,” she said.

Her work with Action Against Hunger includes learning how food is shared, prepared and used within families and communities. Lauer, who hired and trained local staff to assist in data collection, is conducting detailed household surveys of food habits and convening community discussion groups. Lauer’s work will continue through early August.

Aid for Africa believes that development efforts must be studied and improved if they are going to be effective.  The Aid for Africa Endowment for Food and Sustainable Agriculture supports graduate students who seek to advance the well-being of people in Africa through scientific research.

Aid for Africa is an alliance of 85 U.S.-based nonprofits and their African partners who help children, familiesand communities throughout Sub-Saharan Africa. Aid for Africa’s grassroots programs focus on health, education, economic development, arts & culture, conservation and wildlife protection in Africa.

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Lyn Smith
Lynelle R4 years ago

What I can't understand is how in the natural world can ANYONE want to have sex in all of the poverty that they are living in? How can a man WANT to do ANYTHING as weak as they are supposed to be from not having any water or enough food to eat and how in the world can a woman even ALLOW a man to touch her living in all of the mess that surrounds them. You can see other people's babies suffering and dying and probably the one that she already has is suffering and on the verge of death, it just behooves the living mess out of me as to how they can even THINK about sex, let alone do it. They shouldn't need ANY contraception over there and in any of these other poverty stricken countries.

Melania Padilla
Melania P4 years ago

Exactly!! Natasha you are so right! The root of this, and so many other problems, is HUMAN OVERPOPULATION!!! Sending food or clothes or water will not solve anything!

Wendy J.
Wendy J4 years ago

Thank you for the article. I am feeling hopeful for good results from the study.

David Nuttle
David Nuttle4 years ago

Arid/ desert regions (1/3rd of all land) have sustained shortages of water and a minimal food production capability. These areas will support only a few people along with a few livestock numbers and local wildlife. Overpopulation in such areas has far greater negative impact than it would in non-desert locations. This is why counterdesertification efforts are so important along with improvements in birth control (see my prior post on this subject).

Jennifer C.
Past Member 4 years ago


Maria S.
Maria S4 years ago

Sadly noted.

Patricia H.
Patricia H4 years ago

sadly noted

Fi T.
Past Member 4 years ago

A start to respect life

Berny p.
berny p4 years ago


Danuta Watola
Danuta W4 years ago

Thanks for sharing!