Clowns Without Borders has worked to share joy and laughter with children who struggle against poverty, war, and displacement. Troupe work in refugee camps and visited a youth prison for boys, teenagers, and men. Sudan has been experiencing crisis for a prolonged period. Much of it results from the 22-year civil war that has left a devastating mark on the country and famines. In 2003, non-Arabs and other ethnic minorities in Darfur, who since 1990 had been accusing the Government of systematic discrimination, marginalization and oppression, rebelled against the government, protesting decades of political and economic neglect. The government responded with a brutal force including the use of Arab militias known as Janjaweed. In the ensuing conflict, more than 300, 000 people were killed. To date, the conflict in Darfur has affected 4.4 million people, including more than 2.5 million internally displaced persons (IDPs). Violence continues to threaten Darfur and the nation as a whole.
South Sudan became a nation independent of Sudan in 2011 when the overwhelming majority voted in favor of its independence. In a historic seven-day secessionist referendum that began in southern Sudan on January 9, 2011, 98.8% of voters chose independence from the north. The referendum was a provision of the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement.