Hargeisa, 22nd of March 2018. A repaired dam is bringing safe, clean water to the pastoral communities of Wacays Odane and Salahley district in Somaliland, with the support of Somali diaspora, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Global Environment Facility (GEF), in partnership with the Somaliland Government.
The community of Wacays Odane began initial repair work on the dam, with support from Damal Organization, a Somali diaspora-funded NGO, and the dam was then completed by UNDP, who added further facilities, including a water tank for water access, a silt trap to filter out sand and waste, a fence to protect the area, and a caretaker room and store.
The dam has been filled with water with the first spring rains in the region and over 2,000 people from the local community are now able to gather water for their livestock and families. It is expected the dam will hold 30,000 cubic metres of water at full capacity.
Speaking at the opening ceremony for the dam, the Director of the Department of Water at the Ministry of Water Development, Mr. Saed Duale Mohamed, expressed his thanks to the diaspora communities, and to UNDP and GEF for making the dam possible, adding that the project means remote communities will have access to water during drought seasons.
Mr. Abdi Yusuf, UNDP Climate Change and Resilience Programme Officer, highlighted the importance of the dam in an area that is vulnerable to climatic shocks and is severely affected by the climate change. “This dam is part of ongoing work to assist communities in building resilience to such change. It is important that communities increase their resilience to climate change through land management and conservation of the natural resources, and UNDP is working to support these approaches.”.
The completion of Wacays Odane earth dam is one of several ongoing water infrastructure projects under the UNDP Climate Change and Resilience Programme with support from GEF, which includes four more earths dams and over 70 other small reservoirs and wells in the region.
Ilaria Carpen, Head of Area Office, United Nations Development Programme Hargeisa. Email: Ilaria.firstname.lastname@example.org
Keelin FitzGerald, Communications Specialist, United Nations Development Programme Somalia. Email: email@example.com