Did you know that thousands of children in Somalia either look like this, or may look like this soon? (keep reading, it gets better!)This is a 4 year old child from southern Somalia named Ahmed Mohamed. This picture was taken (i believe) on October 19th, 2011 in a hospital in Mogadishu. Thank goodness he made it to a hospital!!
So..... depressing, right? Hopeless? It is so hard for aid to get to Somalia because of the lack of social systems and the ever present violence.
I found a website for an aid organization that is actually making a difference! It is called HIJRA (Humanitarian Initiative Just Relief Aid) and here is their website. http://www.hijra.or.ke/
The website is very informative but i'll give you suotes from their website showing what they focus on:
Water and Sanitation
Our WASH program components include; the construction of sanitation facilities, the promotion of proper hygiene practices and the delivery of immediate lifesaving support. The program further works to ensure community sustainability and development through the training of independent volunteer Water, Environment and Sanitation (WES) committees.
HIJRA's programs today have built over 6,000 pit latrines, constructed 150 garbage disposal sites, provided 3500 sanitation kits and provided safe water to 150 IDP camps.
HIJRA has successfully worked to construct and install 6 water platforms, 13 water tanks and over 100 distribution points.
Food Security refers to the availability of food and one's access to it. One may consider a household “food-secure” when its occupants do not live in hunger or fear of starvation. Livelihoods covers a board range of activities and programs designed to enhance self-reliance through non-formal education, vocational and skills training programs, income generation activities, and food for work programs.
Public health is "the science and art of preventing disease, prolonging life and promoting health. There are 2 distinct characteristics of public health:
- It deals with preventive rather than curative aspects of health
- It deals with population-level, rather than individual-level health issues
At HIJRA our focus on Public Health is intervention and prevention rather than treatment through the promotion of healthy behaviors. Our goal is to strengthen the local community; thereby enabling the communities we assist to become self-reliant.
In order to achieve this goal HIJRA will not construct or build new hospitals rather we will work with the community and local leaders to rehabilitate and renew clinics that are already in place.
I strongly recommend that you look at their website! Because it is an organization started by Africans, in Africa, I believe that they can really achieve great things eventually. They have to start somewhere, right?