Canada is providing clean water and sanitation support to residents in Somaliland after an entire year’s worth of rain fell in just one day. Tropical storm Sagar drenched the country with 300 mm of rain per hour and pounded the coastline with winds reaching up to 120km/h. At least 25 people died and close to 700,000 people are in need of humanitarian assistance.
“The storm affected already vulnerable populations displaced by drought and insecurity,” said Rachel Logel Carmichael from Save the Children, which, as a member of the Humanitarian Coalition, is responding thanks to funding from the Canadian Humanitarian Assistance Fund. “These funds allow us to respond quickly to the needs of these crisis-affected people and ensure we can provide life-saving aid immediately.”
The drought only exacerbated the situation, as the arid, dry terrain was unable to absorb the large amounts of water. Instead, the ground acted like a concrete floor, allowing water to accumulate above ground and causing flash floods throughout the area.
Thousands of homes have been destroyed, while health facilities, schools, water sources and other public properties were damaged. In addition, estimates show 80% of livestock in the affected areas were lost.
Save the Children Canada will help survivors recover and prevent the spread of disease. With $278,340, Save the Children will rebuild and rehabilitate water and sanitation facilities and provide clean water to the most vulnerable people, particularly women and children. Staff will also distribute household and personal hygiene items.
The current situation in the country often means men migrate from rural areas to main towns to seek employment. This results in a massive increase in the number of female-headed households. As a result, Save the Children is making particular effort to target female-headed households with its response.
The Canadian Humanitarian Assistance Fund is a joint mechanism financed by Global Affairs Canada, the Humanitarian Coalition and its member agencies.