In the run-up to the African Climate Summit (ACW), which opened on 4 September 2023 in Nairobi, Kenya, the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre (KSrelief) has committed $5 million towards the resilience of drought-affected communities in Somalia. The grant from the Saudi international organisation will be used in particular to finance the construction of 24 high-speed water boreholes.
The funding agreement was signed on 3 September 2023 between Ahmed Al Baiz, the Deputy General Supervisor of the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre (KSrelief) for Operations and Programmes, and the leaders of an undisclosed Somali civil society organisation (CSO). The meeting took place at the Centre’s headquarters in Riyadh, the capital of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Under the terms of the agreement, KSrelief will commit $5 million to support efforts to supply drinking water to communities affected by drought in Somalia. This natural phenomenon, exacerbated by global warming, is drying up freshwater resources, reducing the quantity of m3 per inhabitant.
To reduce this imbalance between supply and demand, 24 electric water boreholes will be drilled in the East African country. The future installations will be powered by solar energy. “These high-flow groundwater pumping stations will help Somalis by providing them with permanent, renewable sources of drinking water, while improving access to clean water for the beneficiaries and their livestock,” says Abdullah Al Moallem, Head of KSrelief’s Health and Environmental Aid Department.
Drinking water for over a million people
The project will also enable 20 boreholes to be rehabilitated to support the new water installations. In addition, “a sanitation and hygiene education programme will be organised for families in the targeted areas, and water resource management committees will be trained in well operation and maintenance systems”, says Abdullah Al Moallem of KSrelief.
In addition to reducing the drinking water needs of more than a million people, the implementation of this water project will help to reduce the effects of drought in Somalia, particularly water stress.
KSrelief’s new funding of $5 million comes just a few months after the international organisation implemented several projects worth $190 million in the fields of health, water, sanitation and hygiene, emergency aid, food and the prevention of malnutrition in this country in the Horn of Africa.