Prior to COVID-19, hundreds of thousands of people in Mozambique were already in need of water, sanitation and hygiene services. Most of the 80 per cent of urban people live in informal settlements with limited access to water and sanitation, and majority of the increasing displaced population of Mozambique lack access to the same services.
The country has been facing multiple disease outbreaks, including cholera and malaria, stretching humanitarian organization’s capacity to assist those in need of assistance.
Only half of Mozambicans have access to improved water supply and just one in five use improved sanitation facilities. Of the 1,643 health centres in the country, some 19 per cent do not have access to water, and 17 per cent do not have sanitation facilities for patients.
In Cabo Delgado, at least 38 per cent of the displaced population need access to safe drinking water, mainly in Chiure, Montepuez, Mueda and Quissanga districts. Damaged water sources remain a major impediment to access safe drinking water, with at least 6 of 10 localities hosting displaced people in Cabo Delgado hosting IDPs affected.
Women and girls are particularly affected by poor access to water and sanitation, which has a detrimental impact on their health and threatens their security, well-being and education.
WASH partners continued to deliver the essential assistance to displaced population and people at risk of contracting cholera through the temporary provision of water, water source rehabilitation and drilling.
The Cluster also organized hygiene promotion sessions and distribution of hygiene kits.
In Central Mozambique, at least 15,450 people were provided with household disinfection kits in resettlement sites in Sofala (Nhamatanda, Beira and Dondo) through Oxfam in partnership with Kulima. Messaging campaigns are ongoing in other provinces as well through mass media and community actors.
In Sofala, partners organized capacity building on COVID-19 prevention for 300 community actors.
At least 2,250 families had access to safe water through continuous operation of centralized water supply systems in Dondo and Nhamatanda. Partners installed 1,500 handwashing stations at household levels in Dondo District.
As at end of December 2020, WASH Cluster provided WASH emergency support through water trucking in resettlement sites and sustained access through borehole drilling and repairs and rehabilitation of water sources in both resettlement sites and host communities across the central region.
In Cabo Delgado, partners installed 2,000 handwashing stations at household levels in Montepuez District. In December 2020, the WASH cluster (UNICEF, CVM and Save the Children) distributed WASH NFI kits to over 10,000 displaced people in Cabo Delgado and also conducted hygiene promotion activities. The majority of hygiene kit distribution went to resettlement sites and cholera hotspots.
Upon confirmation of cholera cases in Metuge, Ancuabe and Montepuez, UNICEF distributed 6,000 additional bottles of household water treatment chemical. Partners also extended number of taps on water points of Nangua, the locality with the highest number of cholera cases, to improve the availability of water.
Partners are also installing sanitation facilities in resettlement sites to accommodate the increasing number of displaced families in Cabo Delgado. Around 360 emergency latrines were installed in the different temporary sites.
In Nampula Province, 2,323 family latrines were installed in host communities, in addition to 33 temporary latrines and bathing facilities to displaced people. Partners also distributed nearly 540 family and dignity kits in the region.
Also in Nampula Province, partners organized campaigns on COVID-19 prevention, which included distribution of handwashing kits to displaced families.
Hygiene campaigns and change of behaviour activities are a huge gap to promote a safer environment amongst the affected communities.
Fewer number of WASH partners on ground and low reporting rates, with potential duplication and overlaps reported especially in the relocation sites.
Inaccessibility in most locations challenged service delivery and quality monitoring of the activities.