Some 3,000 internally displaced persons (IDP) in the Middle Shebelle Region of Somalia have access to safe, clean drinking water thanks to a well rehabilitation project supported by Zaman International.
International Medical Corps used a $16,000 grant from Zaman to rehabilitate three wells in a village and two IDP camps in the district of Jowhar, which has borne the brunt of recurring conflict, drought, flooding and food insecurity. Through a needs assessment, International Medical Corps determined that most shallow wells serving these populations had collapsed during flooding in 2015 and that remaining wells were damaged or susceptible to contamination. Heavily reliant on raw river water, the area suffered perennial outbreaks of acute water diarrhea.
With Zaman’s support, International Medical Corps prioritized three wells for rehabilitation based on the need and vulnerability of the communities they served as well as the communities’ willingness to manage the wells after rehabilitation. In addition to rehabilitating the wells, International Medical Corps engaged in an education and training initiative to promote sanitation and hygiene. Through house-to-house visits and community events, staff distributed 1,000 hygiene kits and increased awareness of handwashing, household water treatment, proper use of latrines, disease prevention and methods to prevent and treat dehydration. International Medical Corps also trained a committee of 25 community members on water management, well operation and management, and hygiene promotion.
In the two months since the wells have been rehabilitated, the area has recorded a four percent drop in acute watery diarrhea cases. Zaman Founder and CEO Najah Bazzy said the Jowhar District well project demonstrates International Medical Corps’ success in bringing communities from relief to self-reliance.
“International Medical Corps’ commitment to training communities to preserve and manage the infrastructural improvements they receive is a key reason Zaman invests donor dollars in its relief work,” Bazzy said. “Training and education are the keys to self-reliance and the only way to ensure the long-term success of community-improvement interventions.”