Salva Dut and many other students had to run away from their village due to war.
When Salva and their tribe get to the island in the middle of the river, and they are faced with thousands of mosquitoes. "No one in the group got any sleep. The mosquitoes made sure of that. In the morning, Salva was covered with bites."(50)
When Salva was walking he experienced the very harsh environment. "Each minute of walking in that arid heat felt like an hour. Even breathing became an effort: Every breath Salva took seemed to drain strength rather than restoring it. Thorns gored his feet. His lips became cracked and parched."(52)