Water Brings Hope: Strengthening Resilience, Sparking Change in Yemen

December 24, 2023

Two delighted children from a family in Al Kharsha Village, Bajel District, express their happiness as water finally flows into their home.

UNDP Yemen / 2023

In the heart of the arid landscape of Bajel District, Yemen, the Al-Kharsha Village Water Project stands as a testament to the power of collaboration and resilience. This initiative, implemented in the Al-Dhamer Sub-district, has not only alleviated the prolonged hardships faced by community members in Bajel District, but has become a source of inspiration, illuminating a path towards a more sustainable future.

Previously in Al-Kharsha village, Bajel, children had to wake early to fetch water, often missing time in school, and parents faced difficulty taking care of their families due to lack of water. 

Ibrahim Mohammed, a local laboratory worker and father of three, describes the challenges his family faced before the water project.  

"We used to spend half the day walking to fetch water. It was a struggle. We woke up early each morning, standing in long lines to fetch water from the nearest water tank. Lives were lost while attempting to cross the main road to reach the nearest farm, the only source of water with a well for land irrigation.”

Through the ERRYIII Joint Programme, a community committee was established in  Al-Dhamer sub-district, and community resilience plans were developed.  Dedicated community members, along with a technical and engineering team, conducted a field study and successfully implemented a comprehensive water network for Al-Kharsha, Al-Dhamer subdistrict in Bajel with the support of UNDP’s national partner the Social Fund for Development (SFD). The project benefits 250 families and covers a length of 4,300 linear meters.  The successful execution of this initiative was made possible through generous funding from the European Union and the Government of Sweden government, complemented by a significant 20% community contribution towards the estimated project cost.

Al-Kharsha Village community member works diligently, connecting pipes to ensure every household in the village has access to water.

UNDP Yemen / 2023

 “Now, in just five minutes, our water tank is full. It's a relief. My children, along with others, are back in school. Parents can now focus on caring for their children and learning new skills that empower them to earn an income," shares Ibrahim Mohammed. 

"The happiness you can see in people's faces is incredible. Everyone is so relieved that the days of suffering to find water are finally ending." 

Ahmed Abbas, a dedicated school manager and community committee member in Kharjah village, affirms, "The impact of the project is tangible, a testament to our joint efforts. Children are no longer worried about fetching water at dawn; they are focusing more on their education and attending school daily."

Ahmed Abbas, school manager and community member in Kharsha village, Bajel District, discusses how the water project has eased students' morning routines, ensuring a smooth path to school.

UNDP Yemen / 2023

Faud Saleh, Community Contribution Manager in Bajel District, states, "These community resilience plans, coordinated by the Social Fund for Development SFD, have supported 15 initiatives in five sub-districts in Bajel District, including water, education, agriculture, health, and road construction. This project is vital, not just in providing water, but in fundamentally improving people's livelihoods, focusing on sustainable impacts." 

Faud Saleh, Community Contribution Manager in Bajel District, reflects on the far-reaching impact of ERRY joint programme, bringing sustainable changes to the district.

UNDP Yemen / 2023

The local governance component of the ERRYIII Joint Programme, in partnership with the Social Fund for Development (SDF), has established 44 sub-district committees and supported development of 44 community resilience plans in Hajjah, Hodeidah, Saada, Lahj, Abyan, Mahweet, and Taiz governorates . 

Children in Kharsha village, Bajel District, express sheer joy as water becomes a readily available resource, transforming daily life for the entire community.

UNDP Yemen / 2023

Through the ERRY III Joint Programme, concerted efforts of four UN agencies—the United Nations Development Programme, World Food Programme, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, and the International Labor Organization —have played a pivotal role in enhancing livelihood opportunities, ensuring food security, and fostering resilience across various governorates in Yemen, with generous support from the European Union and Government of Sweden.