IOM Improves Access to Safe Drinking Water in Southern Highlands
Five communities in Papua New Guinea's Highlands are enjoying the new water points.
Rural communities of Semin, Humbra-Topa, Kumin, Daga-Pimaga and Pomberel in Southern Highlands Province are happy recipients of safe drinking water points supported by the International Organization for Migration (IOM) through funding from the United Nations Peacebuilding Fund.
As part of its interventions to target communities impacted by conflict, IOM in partnership with the local authorities has supported development and operationalizing of community-led plans addressing peace and sustainable development. Access to potable water was identified by community members as priority during the IOM supported drafting of the Community Peace for Development Plans. Members from the target communities highlighted that installing water points would reduce vulnerability to violence, particularly among women and youth, as accessing water from afar poses potential security risks - especially when the water source is on another tribe’s land.
IOM responded to this need through supplying materials such as water tanks and fittings while community members provided labour and local resources such as water, sand and stones in constructing their water points. “We worked together as a community to put these tanks up. We are very happy and will take good care of these water points,” said a community leader from Daga-Pimaga.
“IOM’s support is timely, and the water points are providing us clean and safe drinking water,” highlighted a woman from Humbra-Topa. “Mothers used to walk long distances to fetch water from the creeks and you [IOM] have brought a relief to us,” she added.