This guide has been developed as a result of discussions held during several oil and gas training programmes delivered by RTENN and Cordaid for government officials, oil company personnel and civil society organizations in South Sudan and the East Africa region. The general observation was that local communities living in oil producing regions lacked learning material that would provide them with a basic understanding of the oil and gas industry. This lack of awareness has resulted in suspicion/mistrust and represents a challenge in the development of oil and gas projects. Therefore, the guide covers basic aspects of the petroleum industry; mainly the upstream sector, with a general overview of downstream activities. It provides a brief introduction to oil and gas formation and how oil companies get permission to carry out activities. This is followed by how companies search for oil and gas; carry out development, get the oil out of the ground and terminate the project. Finally, the impact of the industry on the environment is described, with a specific focus on the common challenges encountered by local communities living within oil producing regions. Safety aspects are clearly highlighted in the form of “cautions”. The material is presented in simple terms/language and is accompanied by illustrations.