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Transport challenges in remote areas of Southern Sudan

In the UK when your car breaks down you might call the RAC or AA and get towed to a garage, your car is fixed and ready within a few days at most. Here in Southern Sudan life is very different. If you break down you have to be prepared to rescue yourself, which  is why our vehicles have radios and we have more than one vehicle in each location.

Spare parts can be difficult to find, so you may have to order them from Nairobi, the capital of Kenya, which will often take weeks rather than days. Trained mechanics are also in short supply, although, luckily, we have our own roving mechanic. Understandably he’s in great demand.

Hire vehicles are very hard to find in Northern Bahr el Ghazal (a state in Sudan bordering South Darfur), because most cars here aren’t insured or registered and often are not mechanically sound. Consequently, they aren’t suitable for Save the Children to hire.

We needed to deliver some wood to the Youth Education centre to enable students to build some desks. The Youth Education centre is located quite close to our store, but the items are too large for students to carry by hand. The vehicle we needed was a pick-up truck that was waiting for spare parts so, instead, we hired a donkey cart and, after a number of trips, all the wood was safely delivered to the Youth Education centre. Sometimes it’s necessary to use unusual methods of transport to ensure that we are able to help children!

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