Term of Award

Fall 2023

Degree Name

Doctor of Public Health in Community Health Behavior and Education (Dr.P.H.)

Document Type and Release Option

Dissertation (restricted to Georgia Southern)

Copyright Statement / License for Reuse

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.


Department of Health Policy and Community Health

Committee Chair

Jeffery Jones

Committee Member 1

Bettye Apenteng

Committee Member 2

Raymona Lawrence


Central and northeastern Africa have experienced a considerable number of humanitarian crises in recent years, exposing local populations to new and increasing barriers to health attainment. International non-governmental organizations (NGO) have responded to these human rights risks and violations by providing much needed support to affected communities. Despite decades of intervention, health indicators suggest the existence of ongoing health barriers and continued poor health outcomes. Objective: This study seeks to identify differences in service delivery across labeled populations by exploring NGO-community labeling practices and population assessment. The research is guided by the Community Coalition Action Theory. Methods: Group label definitions, recency of group needs assessment, distribution of services, and barriers to service delivery were collected using the Beneficiary Engagement Survey. Participants included representatives from NGOs registered with the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Response and operating within South Sudan. Responses were coded and analyzed using descriptive statistics and bivariate analysis. Results: This study found commonalities across the response community in terms of group definitions application. Service delivery was found to favor internally displaced populations over refugees and residents. No statistically significant (α=0.05) relationship was determined to exist between organizational assessment of group needs and implementation of strategies for service delivery. Conclusion: Current group labeling practices and the malalignment of NGO service delivery with group needs could perpetuate disparity within a humanitarian crisis. Future research should focus on the identification of additional contributors to NGO decision-making and their impact on beneficiary health.

OCLC Number


Research Data and Supplementary Material