Mogadishu – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, with support from the Government of Japan has completed the distribution of 150 solar lanterns to survivors of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) in Galkayo, a district in the north-central Mudug region of Somalia, and Mogadishu, Somalia’s capital city.
According to IOM’s Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM), there are over two million internally displaced persons (IDPs) throughout Somalia. As a result of both protracted and acute displacement, women and girls may be more exposed to protection risks including gender-based violence (GBV), combined with a potential dearth of health and social support services.
With support from the Government of Japan, IOM is coordinating GBV prevention and response efforts, with a focus on raising awareness and providing survivors with comprehensive psychosocial support, medical referrals and legal aid, where feasible. Last September, IOM trained staff from non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in Mogadishu to build their capacity in GBV case management and GBV information management systems (GBVIMS).
In early February 2018, IOM Somalia hosted a Psychological First Aid (PFA) training of Trainers (ToT) and a GBV Mainstreaming ToT in Dolow, Gedo in collaboration with the GBV working group. Facilitated by a Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Specialist (MHPSS), the training aimed to build a multi-sectoral capacity among implementing partners from the Health, DTM, WASH and CCCM sectors on concepts around GBV, risks, the role of humanitarian actors from various sectors in prevention and mitigation and to build the capacity of field workers in crisis situations.
PFA provides humane, supportive and practical assistance for people who are distressed, in ways that respect their dignity, culture and abilities.
This week in Galkayo, female-headed households and 18 GBV survivors in Sawade, Bulo and Afarta Tanngi IDP sites received 75 solar lanterns. In Mogadishu, GBV survivors, people with disabilities and newly displaced female-headed households in Dagahweyne IDP site received the remaining 75 lanterns.
Fadumo*, one of the recipients of a solar lantern at the Gadahweyne IDP settlement, said with a smile: “I am happy to have received the lights; it will go far to supporting my family and allow me to do my chores easily at night. With the solar lantern I will have more time to study at night and early in the morning after prayers; this has brightened our nights and we are hoping for more opportunities to brighten our lives.”
To date IOM has distributed over 7,508 solar lanterns to drought-affected communities across Somalia since 2013, prioritizing female- and child-headed households.