Nadifu, a 35-year-old mother of seven, lives in an internally displaced person (IDP) camp in Harahar village in Somalia’s Galkayo region. Harhar village hosts more than 15 IDP camps. Nadifu and her children now call this home—a home where their house is a makeshift shelter made from pieces of clothes. The unforgiving drought wiped out their livestock, leaving them without a source of livelihood. As a mother, Nadifu had to flee from the Mudug region to Galkayo in search of food and water for her children. The family settled in Harhar, where they have now lived for almost a year.
“Living in the IDP camp has not been easy at all,” says Nadifu. “We lack latrines, clean water and food. We have poor shelter and inadequate health care. Last year, we lost many lives to cholera and acute watery diarrhea.”
The lack of clean drinking water and latrines has been a key contributor to the high number of acute watery diarrhea cases reported from the IDP camps and spread of communicable diseases. With funding from the Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA), International Medical Corps has built more than 30 ventilated improvised pit (VIP) latrines to serve the IDPs of Harhar village. This will reduce open defecation, minimizing the spread of diseases.
“We are so happy International Medical Corps came to our rescue,” says Nadifu. “They were providing water to us with trucks during the severe drought period.” She adds: “What I like most about International Medical Corps is the education we get from the team. We get trainings about hygiene, breastfeeding and other healthy practices. They also provide medical care for free! As a mother, I am always worried about the health of my children. I have to do what it takes to keep them free from diseases—and International Medical Corps helps me do just that.”