Writer Joshua Dysart ("Harbinger") has revealed the next chapter of his collaboration with the United Nations' World Food Programme (WFP), titled "Living Level-3: South Sudan." The 48-page online graphic novel can be read here for free and is the second installment in the series highlighting the organization's work in countries where its food distributions are often the only dedicated assistance to millions of hungry people.
The first installment, "Living Level-3: Iraq," was released in January 2016 and focused on the same protagonist, Leila Helal, trying to help solve global hunger. In this sequel, her path crosses with a fictional family who abandoned their home to flee for Darfur to find food and a somewhat better life. Dysart teamed up again with artist and frequent collaborator Alberto Ponticelli, after he returned from Southern Sudan, where he spent time researching child soldiers in the past for his run on Vertigo's "Unknown Soldier." This time he was joined in Southern Sudan by the project's co-creator, Jonathan Dumont, and other WFP staff, for two weeks documenting stories to serve as a backdrop for the novel.
"Well. As many of you know, a few years ago I did a free online comic with the World Food Programme called LIVING LEVEL-3: IRAQ. Today, LIVING LEVEL-3: SOUTH SUDAN, the sequel hit. In spring of 2016, I spent ten days traveling the length of South Sudan for research. Though this is a work of fiction, everything in it is true and actually happened, and is still happening. I made the comic book with my fellow Unknown Soldier alumni, Alberto Ponticelli on art, and Pat Masioni doing the colors. Thomas Mauer lettered it and it was edited by Cristina Ascone. I'd love to get as much of a signal boost on this as I can," Dysart stated on his Facebook profile.
WFP also revealed a short film (below) featuring a South Sudanese man named Apu Riang and his family; the very family that "LL-3: South Sudan's" main characters are based on. Dumont also confirmed that a third graphic novel for the series is in the works, which will delve into the story of one of the peripheral characters to continue the WFP's mission to spread awareness, inspire empathy and help galvanize the international community into action on the issue of world hunger.
To learn more about the famine in South Sudan and how you can help, visit the World Food Programme website.