Better living conditions in Kismayo

Project description

Title: Food security by strengthening resilience in the new settlements of Kismayo
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Country: Somalia
Lead executing agency: Wasaaradda Arrimaha Gudaha Soomaaliya, Ministry of Interior and Federal Affairs
Overall term: 2017 to 2021

Die Gesundheitsstation bietet Mutter und Kind Gesundheitsversorgung an -GIZ_Monica Wangari


An unusually long period of drought combined with civil-war like confrontations threatens the livelihoods of over two million people in Somalia. Many of them flee to the relatively safe coastal town of Kismayo. In addition, many Somalian refugees return from the Kenyan refugee camp in Dabaab to Kismayo. In response to this extreme influx of people, two new settlements were built on the outskirts of Kismayo. At the end of 2017, the first returnees and internally displaced people were relocated, together with local residents in need of support. They had no access to water, business opportunities, jobs, health care or transport. More than 12,000 people are now living in the new settlements and around 350,000 in Kismayo in total.


The basic conditions for improving the food situation of households in the new settlements in Kismayo are established.

Einkommen durch Verkauf im Kiosk - GIZ_Kiman Noor


Together with representatives of the new settlements, the project prioritises interventions and, above all, provides support to elders in their coordination role. The project works closely with the regional water ministry and supports its coordination and regulatory rules. The focus here is on establishing a water agency for the new settlements which will make water available at central water kiosks at regulated prices. With the transparently generated income, the water agency will be able to finance itself. 

In addition, employment and income opportunities are created for people in the new settlements. Labour market-oriented training measures as well as start-ups and the expansion of existing micro and small enterprises are in high demand. The (re)construction of social infrastructure such as a health centre or access roads creates temporary income opportunities through ‘cash for work’ and helps to reduce budgetary expenditure in the long term.  

Regenwassersammelanlage an einem Privathaushalt -GIZ_Kiman Noor


Over 7,200 people in the new settlements have access to basic health care services through the newly constructed and equipped health centre in Midnimo, Kismayo. They can also use salty water from central taps and have access to public toilets. Rainwater collection systems were installed in households and institutions as part of a pilot project. Supported by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, the water ministry is increasingly able to coordinate different donors in the area of water supply. A feasibility study on water supply from the River Juba is being used by other donors as a basis for deciding on a larger-scale investment in drinking water. The project has already enabled 785 households to increase their income.  

Income has been temporarily increased through ‘cash for work’ by restoring an important access road to the new settlements and building the health centre. The road also reduces transport costs and has a positive impact on economic development.

With their business ideas, namely a chicken farm and the manufacturing of clothes, two women’s cooperatives have tapped into new markets and created jobs. Thanks to completed training measures combined with start-up capital, the residents of the settlements now have access to new service offers – for example, through new general stores equipped with solar power. These stores not only sell important goods but also cool drinks and sports equipment and are popular meeting points in the evening because mobile phones can also be charged there. A youth cooperative also sells bricks which its members have pressed themselves. Other cooperatives sell soap, shampoo and tie-dyed clothing for profit.

Introducing energy-saving ovens in households reduces expenditure on firewood and charcoal and counteracts the catastrophic destruction of natural resources.