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Al-Hasaba locals receive water support.

SANA'A, Aug. 21 -- For Ghazi Obad and his ten-member family water was a major problem especially since the clashes in his neighborhood of Al-Hasaba has left many families without source of income. Now because of the work of twelve volunteers of the Yemeni Youth for Humanitarian Relief initiative, around 200 families in Al-Hasaba will be receiving several water deliveries in the next few weeks. This project is implemented by the Yemen 21 Forum and funded by Oxfam-GB Yemen program as a part of its humanitarian relief to Yemen. "I work as a taxi driver earning no more than 2,000 Yemeni Rials a day (around USD eight). I can`t pay the house rent, water and electricity bills. With this water support my family is able to enjoy life better," said Obad. The volunteers of YYHR have surveyed Al-Hasaba area and discovered that there are very poor families who needed urgent help especially in water supplies. "I saw a woman collecting water from the drainpipes as she sat underneath the pipe coming from the roof," said Esam Al-Rawhani leader of the water distribution team. She leaves it for sometime at home so that the dirt settles down and then she uses the cleaner water for domestic purposes. This is how bad the situation is explained Al-Rawhani. Adnan Ahmed is another local in the area has a family of 14 individuals. He complained that because of the high expenses of living they can't afford basic services such as paying for water or electricity bills. "I send my kids to bring water from the nearby mosque or neighbors' house. This water distribution solves a lot of problems for my family. I hope they will continue to distribute water to the needy families," he said. YYHR is a group of young Yemenis who dedicated a team from Al-Hasaba neighborhood to make a change. The project covers the cost of distribution of water deliveries to 200 families for five times during the period from July to September. The area was divided to six parts and the team was responsible for simultaneously distributing the water to the families according to a predefined list resulting from the survey. The community reacted positively and many young men from Al-Hasaba helped the volunteers in the distribution process. "We did face some problems," said Nadia Al-Sakkaf director of the implementing partner Yemen 21 Forum. "For example at times we were not sure if it was safe enough to distribute the water especially since there had been some clashes recently," Other problems included the resentment of some relatively better off families that they were excluded from the distribution. "Sometimes some of the men in the area demanded that we fill their water tanks with water even though they were not poor. It disturbed the process but we got around it by talking reasonably to them and imploring their consciousness especially that it was Ramadan and a charitable spirit was in the air," said Yousef Soroor a member of the water distribution team. Political tensions in the area are very clear and most of the residents have become insecure about any activities in their area. However, this project was a success because it involved youth from the very neighborhood and was about one very neutral issue which is water. Al-Hasaba is home to Al-Hamar tribe leaders who are have opposed the government and their leader Sadeq Al-Ahmar was attacked by the state security. Al-Ahmar retaliated and violent clashes dominated the area for more than a week. The conflict which was the heaviest towards the end of May and beginning of June this year destroyed many houses caused many residents to leave their homes and claimed the lives of tens of Yemenis. Some of the long term outcomes of the conflict are the insecurity and physiological problems especially among children in the area and the loss of sources of income for many locals because of the road blocking and destruction of personal vehicles and other sources of income.

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Publication:Yemen Times (Sana'a, Yemen)
Geographic Code:7YEME
Date:Aug 22, 2011
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