Salahley, Somaliland: On this dry and hot morning, Sulekha Roble Jama walks towards her new home in the Salahley IDP camp.
Sulekha is new here, having fled her home in the rural outskirts of Salahley because of the drought. She travelled with her husband and six children and eventually settled in this village because it offered the one thing they craved for – water and a sense of security.
“We had no water and rain for a long time,” she says. “We use to live a beautiful life, with healthy camels and sheep. That is until the drought came and we could no longer survive this way.”
Four consecutive seasons of failed rains, have affected nearly 20 million people across the Horn of Africa, with millions forced to flee their homes in search of food, water, and pasture. In Somaliland, over 350,000 people are in need of urgent water supply.
“We use to raise cattle and had a beautiful life but a horrible horrible drought came and killed our livestock, everything was gone! We came here out of need not choice. It was all God’s doing but thankfully we are alive and well today. I am very thankful to SOS Children’s villages.
We had 50 camels and 3 dozen sheep, but when the livestock died, how could I support my family with nothing left? There was a choice I had to make to ensure my children and families survival. The mayor of Salahley brought us here to this camp at the centre of town. SOS Children’s Villages has supported us in 2022 and continues to support us now. We have been given four months of food supplies and now have access to water. I’m so grateful and now look forward to a better future.
Sulekha smiles as her three daughters surround her.