05 Jul Mothers in Somalia Fighting For Survival amid Multiple Burdens. By Elizabeth Adeyemo
Mothers in Somalia Fighting For Survival amid Multiple Burdens.
Aamina willed herself to wake up and prepare for the days’ work. She was tired and worn out from everything – She and her family lived life fleeing from one chaos to the other. One day, it was the drought, the next, floods, even in the midst of these, war and conflicts still persisted. Nowadays, she heard about a virus that seems to be spreading like wildfire and harming people in its path. It wasn’t too much to ask for a life filled with peace, health, and abundance. Her husband was a pastoralist, but as drought threatened their survival as a family, he had to travel to find pasture for his livestock. Sometimes she was scared for her husband. She had heard tales of other husbands leaving their wives for weeks and months, only a few came back home. She was left to fend for and protect her children, the fourth already growing within her. She loved them dearly and often felt guilty when she watched them. “Why can’t her children have a peaceful and healthy life?” They managed the little food and livestock they had, taking just a small ration for each day. On days when she felt guilty and insecure about living her children alone in the house, she would take them with her and travel distance to find food and water. She even felt vulnerable about their own safety on other days. Trouble could be lurking around any corner. But nonetheless, she had to go because either way, they would die, from starvation or from an unfortunate perpetrator.
Many women are like Aamina. They may even face much worse than her. They face burdens from the recurrent floods and droughts, shortage of food, inadequate access to water, and persistent conflicts, to crown it all – the pandemic. There are limited resources available to fend for themselves. Many mothers have to travel distance to find a means to care for their children, subjecting those children to improper care. Poor hygiene, sanitation practices, and inadequate water expose both mother and child to acute hunger, malnutrition, and WASH-related diseases.
In Somalia, we have been working relentlessly to change the narrative. We have implemented programs to tackle these issues and alleviate the burdens of many women like Aamina. We have empowered women economically in Hargeisa-Berbera and Burao. To boost inclusivity and equality, enhance their access and control to resources, and enable them to build a better livelihood and earn income. We have also provided seeds and tools to help them maintain their livelihoods and grow more crops. We have implemented programs to boost food security and build resilience among individuals in their community.
Learn more about our projects and strategies here and help save lives by donating here