A seminar promoting rooftop rainwater harvesting was organized by The Institute for Practical Research and Training (IPRT) along its sister organization of ATU-Polytechnic Institute in collaboration with Hargeisa Water Agency (HWA) in Hargeisa on January 16th, 2020. The participants included Vice governor of Maroodi-jeh region, the Director of Hargeisa Water Agency, representatives from GIZ, Terra Solidali, Abaarso Tech University, consultants from HWA, and Somaliland Consultant Association (SOCA).
The seminar started with welcoming remarks and explanation by the Director of the Hargeisa Water Agency. Dr. Ahmed Esa, The Director of Abaarso Tech University and IPRT then delivered a presentation on the overview of the project which is funded by GIZ.
Abdullahi Hassan, the Program Director of IPRT explained the objectives of the project which is mainly on installing a complete of water harvesting system in schools in the upper Biji catchment area.
A lively discussion followed concerning the importance of the project in meeting the water scarcity in Somaliland. Concepts and principles of RWH were explained by narrating the rich traditions of rainwater harvesting that existed in Somaliland in the early urbanization period. Startling experiences from existing RWH were also shared during the occasion. Three water engineers from the Hargeisa region also explained the challenges of water conservation in the Hargeisa region.
In 2010-2012 and recently in 2017, Somaliland suffered some of its most serious droughts in its history, resulting in the reduction of herd sizes, putting 250,000 people at risk of starvation and internally displacing 100,000 people. Somaliland is also on top of the list in the countries that will face severe water scarcity in the 2025.
The participants were sensitized on the need for adopting rooftop rainwater harvesting at the household level which can ensure water availability during lean periods. RWH techniques like the storage implementation strategies and precautions to be taken were discussed in detail.
On the conclusion of the seminar, Mr. Khadar Barud, the Vice Regional Governor of Maroodi-jeex has closed with encouragement remarks on the project and stressed the benefits of RWH in the whole country and the way forward in the next few months before the new rain season.