The Italian government this week announced a donation of EUR 600,000 to UN-HABITAT which will go towards improving the living conditions of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Somalia.
In a statement of appreciation to the Italians, UN-HABITAT said shelter and settlement was an important component in the agency’s response to humanitarian and emergency needs in the Somali regions. The new funding will go towards an ongoing IDP project currently financed by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) in Jowhar/Baidoa in south-centre Somalia.
“The intention is to ensure that displaced communities and vulnerable groups have access to secure and improved living conditions, both in their temporary locations and in permanent settlements,” the statement said.
In urban areas, assistance to displaced communities must not exclude the broader category of the urban poor and the host communities. Resettlement, land management, site upgrading, and improved service delivery are part of a broad concept that addresses sustainable urban growth, as initiated in Hargeisa, Bosasso, Garowe, and now in Jowhar and Baidoa.
The contribution was made after long discussions between the UN-HABITAT Somalia team and the Italian Cooperation which started in late 2007. Italian representatives subsequently participated in a successful Joint Monitoring Mission in February and a Steering Committee in April 2008 of UN-HABITAT’s Somalia Urban Development Programme (SUDP).