March 14, 2012
Relief International volunteer, Bashir Mohamed, reports from the Doro Refugee Camp of Mabaan, South Sudan. He is currently setting up tents as a part of a project that provides around the clock assistance to newly arrived refugees and local families in Mabaan.
Today is my fourth week volunteering with Relief International as the Deputy Community Service Coordinator in the well-known Doro refugee camp of Mabaan, South Sudan. I am currently working on operations for a shelter project that is being funded by UNHCR and implemented by Relief International and have watched as our refugee team in Mabaan work around the clock providing assistance to both the newly arrived refugees as well as those who are settled here.
Today, as part of our routine activities, our team pitched 27 tents in the camp. Mrs. Hajara is the female head of her household and one of 27 families selected from Sorkum (a Doro camp sub-section) to receive a tent from Relief International. Before she received the tent, Hajara and her family of eight did not have a proper shelter. As you can see in the photo, all they had was a small hut that consisted of poles covered by whatever the family could find (mainly pieces of cloth, empty Sorghum sacks, and plastic sheets).
Mrs. Hajara, her husband, and their seven children had fled from Surkum village, located in the Blue Nile state of Sudan, due to the eruption of violence and internal wars in the region. They were not able to bring many of their belongings and her husband went back later to retrieve what they had left behind. Mrs. Hajara has not heard of her husband since, but she hopes that her husband will one day come back home safely.
These two photos depict Mrs. Hajara and her family’s situation before and after they received the tent from Relief International. The photo above was taken in front of their old hut, while the second photo was taken in front of their newly pitched tent.
"Now we own a house, it’s not a tent for us, but before we were homeless," said Mrs. Hajara after receiving her new tent.
As you would notice from the faces of the second photo below, Mrs. Hajara, her children and I are all happy because the family´s lack of shelter nightmare is past.