Jordan: Providing water to refugees and host communities

22 December 2014
Jordan: Providing water to refugees and host communities
© Reuters / M. Hamed

With the influx of hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees into the northern governorates of Jordan, the demand for water has grown significantly. The ICRC has expanded its water activities to meet people's needs.

The influx of Syrian refugees into Jordan is placing considerable strain on local water supplies and wastewater disposal capacity. North Badia in particular has been seriously affected by the refugee crisis. "The increased refugee population in the host communities has created an additional burden for an already aging water supply system," said Danielle Brunton, who coordinates the ICRC's water and habitat programmes in Jordan.

In September, the ICRC signed a memorandum of understanding with the Yarmouk Water Company, which is responsible for water and sanitation services in four northern governorates, to upgrade the water infrastructure in eight of the areas of North Badia most affected by the refugee influx.

"What we are aiming at is to improve the quantity, quality and consistency of water supply for approximately 120,000 people in northern host communities," said Ms Brunton. The transmission and distribution pipe networks, water treatment plants, pump stations and water wells in Mafraq and Rweyshid will all be improved and modernized.

Facts and figures – August through November

Emergency aid

  • Around 3,800 Syrian refugees temporarily in four transit facilities in the north-eastern border area received about 700,000 meals, 152,000 high-energy biscuit bars and nearly 49,000 packs of juice.
  • Around 220,000 bottles of water, 1,300 blankets, 950 mattresses, 18,500 bars of soap, 80,000 diapers, 64,500 sanitary pads and 500 jerrycans were delivered to the Syrian refugees in the transit facilities.

Water and sanitation

  • Tents, shelter caravans and sanitary facilities at four transit facilities in the north-eastern border area were cleaned, maintained and supplied with water.
  • Eight sanitary blocks equipped with septic tanks, cesspools, washbasins, water coolers and new generator houses were built in four transit facilities in the north-eastern border area.
  • Heaters were provided for tents as part of an effort to winterize four transit sites.
  • Three pre-fabricated caravans, a sunshade and a fence were installed for the health facility in Raba'a Al Sarhan Registration Centre in Mafraq governorate.
  • Construction work on pump stations, water treatment plants and transmission pipelines, and upgrades to wells were launched at eight locations in the North Badia: Sabha, Rawdat Basma, Amra wa Omera, Mukifta, Bustanah, Deir Al Kahaf, Ruwayshid and Al Hurra.

Health

  • Jordanian Royal Medical Services working at the health posts in the north-eastern border area were provided with basic medicines for children, chronic diseases and emergencies, wound-dressing materials, "international health emergency kits" and other basic medical supplies and equipment for use in the treatment of Syrian refugees entering Jordan.
  • Medical screening was provided for around 11,775 Syrian refugees, in addition to clinical services for 1,800 Syrian refugees and ambulance transfer services to other health facilities for 153 Syrian refugees arriving at Raba'a Al Sarhan Registration Centre in Mafraq.
  • A total of 79 basic first-aid training sessions were held for around 3,000 Syrian refugees in the Zaatari camp, and two basic first-aid training sessions for 55 Syrian refugees in Azraq camp.

Restoring contact between family members

  • Around 13,500 Syrian refugees in the Zaatari and Azraq camps maintained contact with other family members inside Syria and elsewhere by making international telephone calls which were made available to them with support from Jordan National Red Crescent Society volunteers.
  • A total of 77 travel documents were issued by the ICRC to Syrian refugees granted resettlement in third countries.

Working in partnership with the Jordan National Red Crescent Society

  • Some 4,000 Syrian refugees living in host communities in Mafraq and Madaba governorates were provided with monthly cash assistance as part of a programme implemented with the Jordan National Red Crescent Society.
  • Ten basic first-aid training sessions were held for around 280 Syrian refugees living in host communities, and six sessions for around 180 Jordanians, in cooperation with the Jordan National Red Crescent Society.
  • With ICRC support, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and the Jordan National Red Crescent Society organized two "national disaster response training courses" for a total of 52 participants from the Jordan and Iraqi Red Crescent Societies.
  • The ICRC funded the training of 140 needy Syrian and Jordanian women in hairdressing, computer skills, sewing, basic first aid and awareness of sexual violence at the vocational training centre of the Jordan National Red Crescent Society.

Promotion of international humanitarian law

  •  In accordance with its mandate, the ICRC organized a three-day training session in Amman on the conduct of hostilities with a view to raising awareness of and enhancing respect for international humanitarian law in times of war in Syria.

For further information, please contact:

Hala Shamlawi, ICRC Amman, tel: +962 777 398 794

Sitara Jabeen, ICRC Geneva, tel: +41 22 730 24 78 or +41 79 536 92 31

Mukifta pumping station, North Badia. Work in progress on a 200,000-litre storage tank. CC BY-NC-ND/ICRC/H. Shamlawi

Mukifta pumping station, North Badia. Work in progress on a 200,000-litre storage tank. CC BY-NC-ND/ICRC/H. Shamlawi

Rawdat Basma pumping station. ICRC engineers inspect a new storage tank roof and pump house.CC BY-NC-ND/ICRC/H.Shamlawi

Rawdat Basma pumping station. ICRC engineers inspect a new storage tank roof and pump house.CC BY-NC-ND/ICRC/H.Shamlawi

Amra wa Omera pumping station, North Badia. ICRC engineers discuss progress with contractors.  CC BY-NC-ND/ICRC/H. Shamlawi

Amra wa Omera pumping station, North Badia. ICRC engineers discuss progress with contractors. CC BY-NC-ND/ICRC/H. Shamlawi

Amra wa Omera pumping station, North Badia. Construction in progress. CC BY-NC-ND/ICRC/H. Shamlawi

Amra wa Omera pumping station, North Badia. Construction in progress. CC BY-NC-ND/ICRC/H. Shamlawi

North Badia. Excavation is complete for the pipes that will carry water to the towns of North Badia. CC BY-NC-ND/ICRC/M. Al Shor

North Badia. Excavation is complete for the pipes that will carry water to the towns of North Badia. CC BY-NC-ND/ICRC/M. Al Shor