Ethiopia: Drought response brings smiles on women's facesPublished: Sep 2, 2016 Reading time: 2 minutes
People in Need (PIN) recently has been implementing an emergency WASH intervention for droughtaffected Kebeles of East Belesssa Woreda, in North Gondar Zone of Amhara Region. In this area, communities are highly vulnerable to the impact of climate change in recent years, since rainfall is becoming more erratic and droughts are more frequent. The lack of water is also affecting the communities’ access to basic services such as education and health.
School dropouts are increasing and teachers have started to leave their jobs due to the water shortages. With its emergency project, PIN has carried out seven main activities to give rapid response to the devastating situation of communities in seven Kebeles of the Woreda.
The activities were; water trucking (11,000 BNF), distribution of donkeys with saddle (128 BNF), and distribution of Jerry cans (505), rehabilitation of shallow wells and springs (12), hygiene promotion, water scheme management capacity building and distribution of soap, logistical support and scabies treatment campaign.
“We sometimes feel as if we are still dreaming, it’s a miracle that we get water nearby without going that far. What can we say? We simply bless the people who did this for us. We are now happy that all the challenges went away. We can now find pure water within 5 minutes. That’s a dream came true.” -A Woman from Chikar Kebele.
There is nothing more exciting than observing a little smile and happiness on people who are under difficult circumstances and when that happiness and relief are the results of your project, it makes the excitement double. This is what we witnessed through our emergency project in East Belesa. Women who were supposed to travel 8 hours on average to get water for their families, due to the drought are now raining their blessings on the project team. They start spending their time with their families and most importantly going to schools. Most of the women used to spend one third of their day travelling to and back from the water sources during the drought time, they don’t even had time to have their meals properly and feed their families as well.