"Our number one priority is water": Momina's Story
“I used to travel farther away from home only to bring unclean and unsafe drinking pond water,” says 50 year-old Momina, a mother of nine children who lives in Melkeselah Kebele, a village in Adadle Woreda of the Somali Region. Even those ponds have long dried up because of the prolonged drought in Momina’s village and the community had suffered from critical water shortage. Then, Save the Children responded through a water distribution center that it has put in place in Melkeselah, one of the Kebeles targeted for water trucking services.
A round trip to this water distribution center takes Momina hours but she believes it is worth the benefits, for it has made it possible for her family to have access to clean and safe drinking water. “Our water came from a traditional pond with unclean and unsafe water and we often fell sick from drinking it.” Momina said. “There is no health facility nearby and when someone from the family gets sick, we have to walk five hours to get to the health center in Adadle Woreda,” Momina further explained. Accessing clean drinking water is a matter of keeping her family safe and healthy. “I come here every other day to carry four Jerry cans of clean water home on my donkeys’ back,” Momina told us and that its some 80 litters of water.
The effects of the drought by far exceed the level of humanitarian response that Momina and her entire community badly needs. Momina’s husband and children have to take their animals to faraway places in search of water and pasture. With most of the livestock unable to survive the drought, the family are now left with two donkeys, 20 shoats and two heads of cattle.
Momina is still uncertain about her family’s lives ahead. “I don’t know what the future holds for us,’” she worriedly said. She is very grateful for Save the Children’s response to provide water, which she says, is their number one priority. “We desperately want this program to continue until the rains are back,” she added.
In view of addressing the critical water shortage, Save the Children is continuously supplying clean and safe drinking water to the drought -affected communities in Adadle through its water trucking program. So far, it has been able to supply 9,240m3 of water to more than 34,600 people in the Woreda. Alongside the water distribution, Save the Children has provided 56,458 strips of aqua tabs (water treatment chemicals) to these people in need.