Somalia: Changing Lives for the Better

Puntland

The month of Ramadan is considered sacred for over a billion Muslims worldwide; it’s a period of reflection on the countless blessings bestowed upon mankind and an opportunity for the fortunate to gain a sense of the dire conditions of those most in need through the observation of fasting from dusk to dawn. In the particular case of Somalia, the Muslim Aid UK Organization established in Mogadishu in 1993 has and continues to be an integral supporter of hundreds ofthousands of people by means of humanitarian and developmental initiatives. 

With the constant looming threat of recurring conflicts, famine, drought and the unimaginable anguish gained from over 25 years of instability-the very unfortunate reality is one which the social fabric of Somali society hangs from a thin thread line. 

In Puntland State of Somalia, a region which became a federal member state in 1998, the relative peace and stability continues to prompt rapid migration of internally displaced persons escaping the hardships and unbearable living conditions of other regions. In Garowe, the capital city of Puntland, in which a field office of Muslim Aid is based, there are several overpopulated IDP camps. 

Moreover, the low capacity and unpreparedness of respective duty-bearers continue to struggle with the challenge of ensuring IDP’s receive basic social services. 

In light of the urgency to improve the lives of the neediest, especially at this most trying time of Ramadan, the Muslim Aid field office since 2007 has implemented a ‘Feed the Fasting’ project; the primary aim is to ensure that the neediest are provided with sufficient food provisions. 

Earlier today, as in past traditions, Muslim Aid provided raw food items comprised of rice, cooking oil and dates to 300 IDP families. 

Indeed, due to its acknowledged position as a genuine advocate and supporter of IDP’s, the residents of Jowle Camp were visibly appreciative and grateful. 

“I’m a widow of 8 children and I’ve been living at Jowle Camp for 5 years. I came here and left our belongings and property so that my children can live in peace and stability. 

There’s no external support offered to any of us. Sometimes, if I’m lucky, I make 3 to 7 USD by cleaning clothes for other families in the city. This can be a job that takes 12hrs a day. And, there are times that I don’t get any payment; and, instead food donations for me to take to my children. 

This is my life. So, the amount of food given to me today by Muslim Aid will last my children and I for quite some time”, said Dahabo Mohamed Hashi.  

Puntland Regional Director of Muslim Aid also reaffirmed the commitment of extending unwavering support to IDP’s throughout the scope of prospective projects. 

“Today, we are here to offer whatever help possible to ensure that you can have sufficient food for yourselves and families.

This is not our first time coming to Jowle Camp. We have other ongoing humanitarian projects and remain optimistic that together we can make tomorrow better than today”, stated Abdirahman Hassan Mohamed. 

The 300 families selected as recipients were based on a predetermined criteria set by Muslim Aid in cooperation with the respective stakeholders in charge of overseeing these camps; such as the Ministry of Interior and Garowe Local Council.

SOURCE: MUSLIM AID 

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