Water Department Staff Receive Critical Training

Six years have passed since the onset of the Syrian civil war. The people have suffered from unprecedented levels of displacement and damage to critical infrastructure. More than six million Syrians have been displaced from their homes, with a large number of them relocating to Hasakah Governorate. This has resulted in a reduction of the water supply as water department staff could undertake only simple maintenance projects and rehabilitate parts of the water network in very few places. Moreover, many employees lack the skills needed to maintain the water supply network.

The Syria and Iraq Regional Assistance Program (SIRA) supports vulnerable populations in northeastern Syria through provision of non-food items (NFIs) and improved access to water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) services. IRD provides essential water supply and sanitation infrastructure repairs in areas of Hasakah Governorate with high concentrations of internally displaced persons (IDPs). To ensure sustainability after completion of the SIRA water supply project, IRD trained Water Department staff on how to conduct studies of and solve problems related to water network infrastructure. Staff from ten different offices of the Water Department in different cities of Hasakah Governorate attended the training.

The training not only provided water department staff with skills, knowledge and experience, but was also a platform for employees to meet each other and share experience from different areas. Throughout the training, participants made new connections and were deeply pleased with the opportunity to strengthen their skills meet new colleagues. Building these relationships will enhance efficiency and the level of cooperation between departments in the future. Kawa Abdi, head of the water department in Jawadiyah said, ‘’The water department staff were generally knowledgeable about the water network system design, but the training enriched their understanding with detailed lessons about water sterilization, purgation and other important subjects. Before the training, departments didn’t have good relations with each other. They barely contacted each other and didn’t work together. Now they already started sharing ideas and information, discuss challenges and ask each other for advice.”

The Syria and Iraq Regional Assistance Program is funded by the United States Agency for International Development.