Enhancing resilience in Somaliland communities

The berket (underground water tank) that was constructed for the community in Gatiitalay. Before its construction, the community would walk for 10km to get water

Hargeisa, Somaliland – In the past, I used to endure a 4 hour round trip to get water 10km away.

I don’t own a camel or a donkey and so I had to carry 2 jerri cans of water on my back for 2 hours, to and fro each day.

On few occasions, my neighbours would use their donkeys and camels to help us carry the water.” Fadumo Ali from Gatitaley village in Odweyne district of Somaliland

“Enhancing resilience in Somaliland communities” is a program that was started in 2015 by World Vision aimed at increasing the resilience of chronically vulnerable pastoral, agro pastoral and peri-urban communities in Gatiitalay community. Community members walked 10 km everyday to get water.To improve access to water,World Vision helped in the construction of one berket (underground tank), four shallow wells and two earth dams.

The Gatiitalay berket transformed Tirig’s life.The berket can harvest up to 14,000 litres of water.Tirig Jama Mohamed, 45 years old and a mother of five who runs a teashop in Gatiitalay is full of praise for the berket that not only supplies her with water for domestic use but also improved her business.

“I used to close my shop for at least two hours every day to go and fetch water for my business 10 km away. I lost so many hours getting the water and once I had it was not always enough. With the berket, I only take 30 minutes to access water,” says a happy Tirig.

Tirig with her son at the berket. She now has time for her tea shop as well as for her family
Tirig with her son at the berket. She now has time for her tea shop as well as for her family

World Vision Somalia supported the community with the berket and Tirig does not have to worry about water anymore. She now has enough time to serve her customers and subsequently increase her daily revenues.

“A total of 200 households are being served by the berket.A kiosk system has been established to ensure a sustainable management of the facility.The households pay USD 0.07 for a 20-litre Jerri can for the water services. Of the funds collected, 60% is used to pay the guard and the kiosk personnel whilst 40% is for operations and maintenance,’’ says 65 year old Rashiid Abdi Alin, the community chair- man.
A child carrying a jerrican of water. The berket constructed in the communiyt has made it easy for both women and children to fetch water easily. Women are now able to have time for other activities.
A child carrying a jerrican of water. The berket constructed in the communiyt has made it easy for both women and children to fetch water easily. Women are now able to have time for other activities.

Story by

Abdirahman Abdilahi Muse

Senior WASH Communications coordinator

Somaliland

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