Mutual aid in Sudan: the future of aid?

Carstensen, N., Sebit, L.
Publication language
Date published
11 Oct 2023
Humanitarian Practice Network
Accountability and Participation, Local capacity, Conflict, violence & peace

This article provides a top-line overview of the diversity and reach of mutual aid and other locally led efforts by Sudanese in the months following the outbreak of fighting between the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) on 15 April 2023. Given the nature of such a diverse response, and given the situation in Sudan, quantifying the scale and impact of these efforts is extremely difficult. Still, showcasing the diversity and indicating the scale of responses and responders and their geographic reach, along with capturing early experiences on how outsiders can support such efforts, seems important. Hopefully, this may serve as an inspiration for external actors to explore and find ways to support mutual aid and other locally led efforts – not least because humanitarian responses by most external aid actors came to a virtual standstill within hours of the outbreak of fighting, and at the time of writing remain modest in relation to increasingly desperate needs. A better understanding of mutual aid efforts in Sudan since 15 April may also help guide external aid actors in crises elsewhere with some of the same characteristics.