The residents of Dhadacha Farda Kebele used to migrate in search of water, but for two years now they have not needed to leave their home area.
“I have stopped migrating, thanks to Hara Amaya pond, located near my house,” mentioned Abdo Ibrahim, 52, a father of seven children.
Like Abdo Ibrahim, most male residents of Dhadacha Farda Kebele used to migrate at least twice a year in search of water with their cattle leaving their family behind. “I used to migrate for about two to three months every year,” said Abdo Ibrahim “When I am away there is no one to look after my farm and family.”
Hara Amaya, which means modern pond, was one of the biggest ponds rehabilitated as part of an ECHO funded project. It used to be a miniature community pond with a smaller capacity. After the rehabilitation of the pond, residents have never suffered a shortage of water. The pond even provided water for more than two neighbouring kebeles who migrated to the Kebele during dry seasons.
“I have more than 40 goats,” said Abdo Ibrahim with a relief on his voice “My number of goats was not as much as now because most of them used to die due to shortage of water.” Miniature
ECHO funded Hara Amaya Pond was rehabilitated from 2012-13 to collect rainwater for animals. The pond is located in Raytu District of Bale Zone, Oromiya Region, Ethiopia. It has the capacity of 16,000 Cubic Meters. The pond is used frequently by Dhadacha Farda Kebele residents, however two neighbouring kebeles: Arda Negya and Felte use it during drought. A total of 1868 people and 8435 animals use the pond.
Rainy Season of the area is from mid-March to mid-June, which is known as the Genna Rain and from mid-September to mid-November, which is known as Hageya Rain.
Abdo Ibrahim always restores law and order in and around the pond. The Community Managed Disaster Risk Reduction Committees (CMDRRC) has assigned Abdo Ibrahim, one of the respected elderly, to look after the pond. “For everyone who uses the pond we charge 10 per month,” mentioned Abdo. In addition, the pond is fenced with thorny branches and a narrow passing door to avoid animals’ entrance. Everyone, who is using the pond, is only allowed to use it every other day.
Elephant grass were planted around the pond to prevent siltation entering the water. The grasses planted two years ago has grown as tall as two meters. “I have always taken care of the plantation around the pond,” stressed Abdo Ibrahim “because without them the pond wouldn’t last long.”
The pond, which served the community for the past two years, needs some maintenance around its water inlet. “I have noticed a problem around the water inlet due to pressure of the water,” explained Abdo Ibrahim “I have informed Kebele leaders and the water committee about the problem.” Abdo Ibrahim will keep on struggling until the inlet is fixed after all he bears a huge responsibility of the pond.