Gender equality and the empowerment of women are central to the mandate of UNDP and intrinsic to its development approach. Gender equality, rooted in human rights, is not only a development goal on its own but also vital to accelerating sustainable development for all.
The crisis that erupted in July 2016 continues to exacerbate gender inequality due to women’s greater vulnerability to poverty; distinctive social obligations and responsibilities; as well as exposure to sexual and gender-based violence. More than 300,000 malnourished pregnant and lactating women require assistance, and 1 in 7 women die giving birth. South Sudan has the highest maternal mortality in the world. According to Africa Human Development Report 2016, women in Sub-Saharan Africa achieve only 87% of men’s levels of human development. In line with UNDP’s Gender Equality Strategy 2014-2017 and in close consultation with national, state and county government as well as with development partners, UNDP South Sudan works to mainstream gender equality and advance women's empowerment into core governance functions, economic recovery, service delivery, disaster risk reduction, access to justice and rule of law, peace building and reconciliation. We envision a peaceful, democratic, just and prosperous South Sudan where men and women can reach their full potential and contribute equally to the development of their country.