Our life is so much easier becaue we don't have to go outside in the cold to get water and risk getting sick... now we have it inside.
Salim, 43, is from Irbid, Jordan and lives with his family of 6. Due to an illness, Salim can’t work so the National Aid Fund provides his family with monthly financial support, thanks to which schooling for their 4 children, and all other living expenses, including water and electricity, can be paid.
Because water is very scarce, its price can be pretty steep for families like Salim’s, who struggle to make ends meet. “We used to pay around 15 dinars a month to buy water in very small quantities. Now we pay that amount every 3 months,” he explains.
Salim’s family situation has improved tremendously since the installation of a bigger water tank, a water heater and taps. “This improved the quality of our lives,” he says. “For example, if we needed hot water before, we would need to heat it on the stove. Now we have it flowing thanks to a switch. Sanitary installations have also been set up.”
The European Union and its partners on the ground work with local authorities to strengthen services delivery and infrastructure. Having access to clean and hot water and not having to go outside to collect it from public wells, even when weather conditions are harsh, is definitely a major improvement in the lives of more than 460,000 Syrian refugees and vulnerable local communities, thanks to the support given by the EU to the WAAD consortium (ACTED, Action Against Hunger and Intersos), via the Trust Fund. “Our life is so much easier because we don’t have to go outside in the cold to get water and risk getting sick… now we have it inside. If you want to take a shower, or do dishes it’s all possible.”
Other people living in the Northern Aghwar district have only access to 3 hours of water once every two weeks. If they live at higher altitudes, the water pump can barely fill up their pumps. This is why the majority of people in this region are forced to rely on wells and don’t have filters to purify the water they collect. “Before installing the pumping station in Kraymeh, it was difficult for citizens to access water because of the high altitudes,” says Dr Rashdan, director of Northern Aghwar Water. “After implementing this project a year ago, the water situation improved a lot. [...] The quantity of water has increased a lot compared to what citizens were receiving before… the situation has become much better!”
“We get our water from the water company and it comes with a water meter. […] In our house, we use the excess water to water plants, meaning that the water we use to do the dishes, for example, is recycled, so we don’t waste it,” explains Salim. Beneficiaries of this project also receive basic maintenance training and a tool kit to repair any damage themselves. “We wanted to add a tap outside so I used the tape and added some pipes and it was easy,” adds Salim.