Serving women facing drought in Somaliland

News and Press Release
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Ayan looks content as she winds up her night shift at Duruqsi Mother and Child Health Center (MCH) in Somaliland. She had just referred a pregnant woman with complications to Buroa Hospital. The woman is among those affected by drought, which has affected many parts of Somaliland.

“The woman started having fits while she was in labour. She was in a critical condition and could have easily died if we did not respond quickly,” said Ayan, adding: “Fortunately I am trained to handle such kind of emergencies.”

Ayan graduated in 2015 from Buroa Institute of Health Sciences (BIOHS), which receives technical and financial support from UNFPA. She is a qualified midwife and works in a Basic Emergency Newborn and Obstetric Care (BEmNOC) facility in Duruqsi District.

“I am from this area and I was specifically trained to help the people within my own community,” said Ayan.

According to the United Nations, the humanitarian situation in Somaliland and throughout Somalia is rapidly deteriorating. Out of 12.3 million Somalis, over half – 6.2 million – are now in need of humanitarian assistance, up from five million in September.

Of these nearly 3 million need urgent life-saving assistance, another drastic increase from 1.1 million six months ago. Displacement, malnutrition and drought-related diseases are all on the rise. Preliminary forecasts indicate that below average to near average rainfall is expected to prevail across most parts of Somalia during the forthcoming 2017 Gu (April-June) season.

UNFPA is responding to drought affected populations with emergency reproductive health kits including providing kits for referral facilities to manage complicated cases.

– Mohamed Yusuf

For more information please contact UNFPA Somalia Communications Specialist Pilirani Semu-Banda on e-mail: