In Syria, families just cannot seem to escape from increased hardship. Residences have seen a deterioration in the health situations within the camps of northern Syria with the urgent need to enhance hygiene and living quality. This is mainly down to septic tanks: these are systems that collect wastewater in homes, businesses, and other areas that are off the grid. They are a helpful alternative in areas without sewage systems, but there are too many in the camps: private, others public, and even open or closed.

WATAN places hygiene as one of the most critical areas of intervention. Thus, it launched a sizeable project to enhance sanitation to alleviate the displaced’s burdens and provide a safe, healthy, and stable environment. Especially considering the acceleration of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is tantamount to fight to reduce the spread of epidemics and infectious diseases.

The proposed project was to take place in the following camps: We Are a Nation, Al-Nuri, Thebes city, The Sons of Hama, Al-Malaab Kafr Daryan, Al-Furat, Umm Jalal, The Second WATAN Model Camp, Al-Faraja, Kafr Daryan town.

The project consisted of the following activities:

  1. Supplying sterilized water through tanks.
  2. Removal of solid waste.
  3. Withdrawal of septic tank fees.
  4. Distributing baskets of personal hygiene boosters.
  5. Periodic health awareness campaigns.
  6. Distribution of garbage containers.
  7. Building blocks of regular bathrooms for people with special needs.
  8. Contracting workers to clean the bathroom blocks daily.
  9. Paving of roads.
  10. Implementation of sewage lines with fermentation pits to convert water into water suitable for irrigation.
  11. Equipping wells and implementing water networks, electric generators, and a solar energy system to operate the wells.

This project, being a large one, is implemented over time. It launched at the beginning of 202. The most notable achievements at the end of August are:

  1. Continuing to provide daily water supply, emptying septic tanks, and solid waste removal.
  2. Finished distributing garbage containers at a total of 205.
  3. Distributing toilet block cleaning equipment to 21 cleaning workers across the targeted camps.
  4. Starting the activity of implementing sewage lines in Kafr Daryan town, Al-Malaab Kafr Daryan, Al-Furat, Umm Jalal, Al-Faraja.
  5. Starting the work of distributing water tanks to the targeted camps, scheduled to distribute 106 water tanks.
  6. Preparing to start the next round of health awareness classes at the beginning of September.
  7. Preparing to start a distribution activity: it is scheduled to distribute a further 3,513 hygiene baskets boosters.
  8. Locating areas implement solar energy kits for the wells in Al-Nuri, Taiba, We Are a Nation, Kafr Daryan town. It starts leveling the floors to build the bases of the panels.
  9. Starting the activity of building bathroom blocks within the camps. It is scheduled to build 46 regular double blocks and 4 blocks for people with special needs.

According to the latest update, the number of beneficiaries of these services reached 3513 families, precisely 20,329 individuals.

The project expects to contribute to the following positive results:

  1. Promoting personal hygiene by providing sterile water, removing waste, and reducing the spread of diseases and epidemics.
  2. Supporting families with low incomes, widows, and people with special needs and alleviating the financial burden.
  3. Educating the beneficiaries of the need to enhance personal hygiene through awareness campaigns.
  4. Reducing the pressures experienced by the displaced and camp residents in light of the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
  5. Supporting the camps’ infrastructure through maintenance, restoration, and construction of bathroom blocks.
  6. Establishing a sewage network that can be used in the future to expand the network and accommodate a more significant number of beneficiaries.