UWT in Somalia

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    23 December 2011
    Markaz Ummul Mu’mineen Aysha bint Abu Bakr

    Allah’s Messenger Sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam said, ‘I and the person who looks after an orphan will be together in Jannah like this.’ (He then raised the index and middle finger) (Bukhari)

    Situated in Hamarweyne, in the district of Banadir, is Markaz Ummul Mu’mineen Aysha bint Abu Bakr. An orphanage for girls, the Markaz has 41 staff and 200 orphans. Up until two years ago the orphanage actually catered for 350 orphans. Financial troubles however meant that 150 had to be sent home.

    Recent years have been difficult for both the orphans and staff alike. Not knowing when and where the funding will come from, the staff – the vast majority of whom are female - can only plan for the children on a daily basis. Local businesses provide intermittent funding but the in reality, up until UWT’s arrival, this straitened orphanage needed desperate help.

    Following assessments of the centre, UWT started work straight away. Food supplies were arranged to guarantee every orphan receives three square meals every day. This cooked food programme will continue indefinitely inshallah. Alhamdulillah, the added benefit of this project is that the money saved by the centre on food costs will be used to bring back the 150 orphans who were sent home two years ago. UWT will therefore be providing food to 350, rather than 200, orphans three times a day inshallah.

    UWT’s project for this orphanage will go further inshallah. The medical dispensary will receive a new stock of medicines which will be updated regularly inshallah; and the young children will receive new clothing, new mattresses and new desks inshallah. Moreover provisions of these items will be regular to ensure the children have the best comfort inshallah. With the support of its donors, UWT will fully incorporate this orphanage into its overall project for Somalia inshallah.

    We ask UWT’s donors to continue sponsoring and caring for orphans inshallah and to continue showing mercy to the weak amongst the Ummah. A time will surely come when we are weak and in need of help. But through our actions today, Allah’s mercy will rain down upon us and carry us to success inshallah.

    21 December 2011
    Relief for TB Patients and the Disabled

    Abu Darda Radiallahu ‘anh reported that the Messenger of Allah Sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, ‘Seek among weak ones, for you are given provision and help only because of the weak amongst you.’ (Abu Dawud)

    Conflict, weak central governance and international neglect have led to a health crisis in Somalia. Hospitals and health centres are oversubscribed yet underfunded, understaffed and underequipped. Many patients are therefore forced to suffer the crippling effects of disability and illness with little or no support.

    The Baidoa TB centre was founded in 2000 and alhamdulillah, given its hugely limited resources, is doing an outstanding job in treating poor rural persons afflicted with tuberculosis. Every morning around 150 Somalis from rural villages in Bay and Bakol arrive at the centre to be treated. Some of these patients are so poor however that the prescribed medication has little effect, given that they have no food or water with which to take the tablets. Somalis describe tuberculosis as the poor man’s disease.

    UWT staff, upon visiting the centre, decided to distribute kitchen and wash utensils to patients who’d received their treatment and were going home. One hundred and fifty five patients were targeted, the majority of whom were female.

    It is worth noting that 74 poor and deserving families were also included in this distribution. These families were chosen from several villages surrounding Baidoa and were living in the lap of poverty with little in the way of food and possessions.

    Case Study: Ishak Ali Mohamed

    Ishaq has been taking medication for his TB for 5 months now. Originally from the village of Yurkud which is around 120kms away from Baidoa, Ishak has seven children – 4 boys and 3 girls. His family is poor and eat only once a day. Ishak’s wife, Fatuma, has nothing to send to her husband who is in Baidoa receiving his treatment. When she can, she does visit Ishak on occasion. Ishak was very happy with his new utensil set and was looking forward to sending it to his wife who will no doubt make much use of it inshallah.

    UWT will always try its best to help the marginalised and ignored; those with little voice; and who are stoic and steadfast in their struggles with this dunya. It is why UWT, in whichever country it administers work, will always extend a hand to the disabled community inshallah.

    Alhamdulillah, 55 disabled residents of Baidoa also received kitchen and washing sets. Each disabled person brought his/her family to UWT’s distribution centre for collection. These families have to tend to the disabled member 24 hours a day and as such cannot really earn or acquire a better standard of living for themselves. These utensil sets will ease a difficult daily existence for them inshallah.

    Case Study 1 : Mohamed Adam Unow


    Young Mohamed is blind and mentally disabled. His mother told UWT staff that in his first year of childhood, he caught measles. Failing to be treated he lost his eyesight. A few months later he lost the ability to concentrate and remember. Inshallah the large utensil set will ease Mohamed’s mother’s daily routine as she tends to Mohamed’s needs.

    Case Study 2: Mohamed Adam Abdi

    Mohamed Adam Abdi, 5 years old, was born healthy but by the will of Allah lost his eyesight a little later.  His mother, speaking to UWT staff said, ‘I ran everywhere for him in order to acquire medicine. Up until two years ago, I visited many doctors. For the past two years however we have had income problems so now I worry about his daily food needs. There is no one who helps us except Allah.’ She continued, ‘Mohamed would go to formal and Quranic schools but he became disabled. This was given by Allah and no one can prevent it.’ UWT ask Allah to ease the difficulties of Mohamed and his mother and keep them steadfast in this life inshallah.

    Case Study 3: Hussein Iman Adan

    Twenty six year old Hussein became disabled in his early years of childhood. He requires attention 24 hours a day but his parents have now become old. Hussein’s father is an elderly man with no job while his mother spends much of the time trying to get enough food for the day. His mother mashallah remains steadfast and says that though she is tired, she hopes to pass the test Allah has decreed for her inshallah.

    19 December 2011
    Relief in Gedo

    Gedo, in south west Somalia, borders both Kenya and Ethiopia. It is an isolated region that relies on goods being imported from neighbouring districts and countries. This year’s drought led to the death of over 50% of the livestock and many families fled into Kenya and Ethiopia. Alhamdulillah rains in the past two months have meant that many families have returned and started work on their lands once again.

    Sadly however, the rains in the past few weeks have been excessive and parts of the district have been flooded, notably the towns of El Adde and Bardhere. Due to their isolation and, in recent times, security issues, both towns are difficult areas in which to administer relief efforts.

    Alhamdulillah thanks to their donors, UWT distributed tents along with complimentary kitchen and washing sets to 150 families in the region. Seventy one tents and utensil sets were distributed in Bardhere and 79 in El Adde.

    In Bardhere, tents and utensils were distributed in the villages of Bakal, Hureena, Girgiris and Gamaray. Bakal was the largest and most affected village of the four and thus much of the tents were distributed there. In El Adde, around 90km away from Bardhere, many of the livestock who survived the drought were washed away in the flooding. Families in the town had suffered between two very different, yet equally damaging natural disasters.

    Case Study: Batulo Ali Abdi

    Batulo Ali Abdi, 70 years of age, lives in Bakal village, about 10km east of Bardhere town. The long drought season killed all her livestock and she was left with nothing. Then the floods arrived and her home was destroyed.

    Upon receiving her new tent and utensil set, she said “We thank for the Muslims who crossed thousands of kilometres in order to support the Muslims here in Somalia. I am very happy to be one of those people who is benefiting from this aid.”

    18 December 2011
    Relief in Bonkai Camp

    In 2008, UWT built new homes made from corrigated iron for 76 families in Bonkai camp. Visiting the homes today, they were all fully intact and occupied by the same families. Sadly the resident families were still poor, though many had started to see some return from their farms as the rains had now arrived. Others who were not farmers however, struggled on their subsistence lifestyle and would be forced to beg on the streets of Baidoa on occasion.

    The UWT team went back to the same families this week; this time to hand out utensil sets. Alhamdulillah, a popular item amongst refugees during UWT’s relief efforts in Somalia, the set contains 45 pieces of kitchen and washing items. The set alhamdulillah perfectly complements a family’s new shelter or food pack.

    For 8 new families in the camp, UWT also provided new durable tents. The families had been living in terrible conditions since their arrival to the camp and alhamdulillah were hugely appreciative of the new shelters.

    The challenges faced by these steadfast Muslims in rural Somalia have been, and continue to be, great indeed. UWT ask Allah to continue using it as the means of confronting these challenges and to be a source of ease and safety for these Muslims till the Day of Qiyamah inshallah. Ameen.