Stories of change

Abokor Mohamed - MoWRD Borama water supply

big moment in Abokor Mohamed's career came last year when he and six members of SHABA’s technical team participated in an on-the-job training on steel tank installation by Rhino International. SHABA, a private operator, has been managing the Borama water supply services since 2003 as a PPP with the Ministry of Water Resource Development (MoWRD). Under the SDF2-funded Borama water project at the MoWRD, Rhino, an Australian company, was contracted to supply and install two 500,000 litre steel tanks and conduct on-the-job training for SHABA’s technical department.

As a result of the training and other support, SHABA will no longer need to hire international experts to do similar jobs. The technicians will be a great asset for Borama's water system and are also willing to offer their expertise to other water utilities in the country as the need arises.

Abokor Mohamed, 25, left school at an early age and became a water technician to support his extended family. He is now working as a technician for SHABA, a public-private partnership with the MoWRD that manages Borama water. For the last six years, he has been involved in water distribution initiatives in Borama town for SHABA.

"I was unsure how we would assemble these two large tanks at the beginning, but with on-the-job assistance from Rhino experts, we began to install the first tank. On the first two days, they showed us the foundations, and in the next five days, we gained the confidence to complete the first tank in seven days. The second tank was even easier to install and was completed in six days" - says Abokor with confidence.

DJI 0016 

Abokor Ahmed has positive thoughts towards his career and is looking forward to offering this to other water utilities in the country. He also inspires the youth of his age to shift gears and learn technical skills to go a long way. “The project has helped me gain knowledge and skills to strengthen my position in the department.”

Sahra Ahmed & Mohamed Hersi - MoLFD Livestock Holding Ground

In Togdheer, the majority of a pastoralist’s life depends on livestock rearing and rainfall for livestock pasture. However, recurrent seasons of low rainfall have resulted in prolonged drought, the depletion of grazing land and animal deaths. That's why Aroori Livestock Holding Ground (LHG) was rehabilitated under the first phase of the Somaliland Development Fund (SDF) to enhance livestock exporting systems with infrastructure and provide livestock producers and traders with the means to preserve the condition and market value of export animals. The project has rehabilitated several communal water sources including four shallow wells and two boreholes for pastoral communities in Aroori.


"Local shallow wells dried up in the locations I visited, and the price of water increased. I lost 90 goats since I couldn't afford to buy water for my livestock. I decided to relocate here a few days ago from Hara-dada Gubato Hill, 120 kilometers from Aroori. I am so happy to finally be able to settle near Aroori and provide for my family and animals” - Mohamed Hersi


Sahra Ahmed, 38, mother of seven, used to reside 5km from Aroori. She lost 40 goats due to the looming drought. She also had to relocate multiple times in order to feed her livestock, before settling near the livestock holding ground. It has saved her livestock and family.

In February 2022, great news came when the governor of Togdheer, Mohamed Abdilahi, reopened the Aroori Livestock Holding Ground. The pastoralists from Togdheer and even beyond are now benefiting from this grazing land. The grazing land has helped in saving millions of livestock and impacts the many human lives that rely on the meat, milk, and revenue generated from them during this critical time. Nowadays, grunts of camels and bleats of goats are regular sounds heard before entering Aroori Livestock Holding Ground.


“Pastoralists came from as far as the Somali region in Ethiopia. There are close to 1 million goats and sheep, as well as 17,500 camels, grazing here right now. We also have a veterinary team that is constantly performing livestock treatment activities” - Abdi Weli, LHG manager in an interview with SAAB TV.

Improving Communal Water Infrastructure in Qool Caday

Access to safe drinking water for both human and animal population is fundamental for good quality of life. Pastoralist communities in the Qool Caday grazing plain of Somaliland, have long suffered the lack of a centralized communal water system for human and animal consumption, despite the fact that the topography of the area offers suitable conditions for sustainable water harvesting.

To address this gap, the Somaliland Ministry of Livestock has secured funding from the Somaliland Development Fund (SDF) to implement the Livestock Holding Ground Project. The project supports the construction of water harvesting infrastructure including drilling of two boreholes and excavation of three earth dams, as well as other livestock enhancing support services including the construction of seven animal health and inspection centers.

Closer Access to Water Empowers Communities in Aburin

Abdi Hashi, 53, agro-pastoralist, lives in Laalayska, a village in the Maroodijeh Upper Catchment area, about 24 km west of Somaliland’s capital, Hargeisa. His home, a small hut, is located at the bottom of a hill on rough terrain overlooking the dry agricultural land of Mahbuubta area. Lack of water has turned the surrounding trees black and the soil dry. Rain has been sporadic over the recent years and the area is now experiencing a drought. Over the past years, persistent water scarcity, recurrent droughts and soil erosion have led to poor harvests from farms and killed many of the livestock he owned. Due to soil erosion and overgrazing, the little uncultivated land available has gradually turned into rough terrain and gullies formed in the eroded parts.

Roads Development Agency and Hargeisa Water Agency host SDF donors on a maiden visit to Road and Water Projects in Somaliland

Hargeisa, Somaliland. On 9 June 2015 – a delegation from the Government of Somaliland (GoSL) accompanied by the Somaliland Development Fund (SDF) donors visited the Roads Development Agency (RDA) laboratory to see the equipment funded by the SDF. Later on, the delegation visited Hargeisa Water Agency (HWA) pipe storage facility where recently imported pipes for Hargeisa Urban Water Supply Upgrading Project pipes have been stored. The purpose of the visit was to provide the GoSL and the donors with an opportunity to see recently supplied modern laboratory in RDA as well as the recently arrived 371 container loads with 3,696 pieces of 600mm ductile pipes (slightly over 21km) meant for use in the upgrading of the Hargeisa Urban Water main water pipeline. An additional 124 containers with pipes, valves and fittings are expected during the coming month.  Both laboratory equipment and the pipes are funded by the SDF.

Ministry of Agriculture hosts SDF donors

A delegation of donors contributing to the Somaliland Development Fund (SDF) accompanied the Government of Somaliland officials on the first joint meeting to the SDF funded projects. The visit was conducted on 2 March 2015 to the Ministry of Agriculture’s (MoA) Maroodijeh Upper Catchment (MUC) Soil and Water Conservation project which is located in Faraweyne district. The donor delegation included three representatives from DANIDA, two representatives from DFID and three representatives from the Kingdom of Netherlands, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, whilst the government of Somaliland was represented by the Minister of National Planning and Development Dr. Sa’ad Ali Shire, Director General, Ministry of Agriculture, Eng. Abdullahi Ismail Farah, Mayor of Faraweyne district and a host of other MoA officials at the national and district level. The objective of the visit was to provide the donors with a first-hand opportunity to learn on the progress made by the SDF and the Agriculture project in particular.