Clean Water In the Desert—Helping ISIS-Affected Families Rebuild

Not much is left of the town of Mukashafah after it was occupied by ISIS and later liberated. But you are there, helping residents rebuild.

Moving “home” after communities are liberated from ISIS is a herculean task. 

Houses are destroyed, but also the basic infrastructure which allows for modern life, clean drinking water, electricity, food shops, vegetable stands, etc., it is so much harder to rebuild when precious time is used finding simple things like clean water to drink.

The water treatment plant in the Iraqi town of Mukashafah hadn't been used in more than a year, when ISIS drove residents from their homes.

Finding clean water isn’t just a matter of taste, it’s a matter of survival! In the region between Baghdad and Mukashafah, dirty water is causing an outbreak of cholera. More than 800 cases have been confirmed, and the numbers rise weekly.

This water treatment system used to bring safe, clean drinking water to families in Mukashafah— before ISIS drove the community from their homes, before it was left unused for a year, and before the holding tanks became choked with mud and weeds.

There has been a cholera outbreak in this part of Iraq, so getting clean water is a high priority for returning residents.

When residents asked for replacement components for their water system, our answer was a quick ‘yes’! But what grew out of that ‘yes’ was more than we could have hoped for.

Currently many residents are living in tents that you helped to provide, while their homes—destroyed by ISIS and liberating forces—are rebuilt.

The young men of this community took time out from rebuilding their own homes to work together for the whole community’s good. They quite literally threw themselves into the job—climbing down into stagnant water to pull weeds, cleaning canals and making needed repairs. Filtration was updated. And finally, water that is safe to drink pumped from the system.

Having ready access to clean water will accelerate the timeline for residents to resume some semblance of a normal life.

Earlier this fall you showed up with emergency relief aid and tents—so returning residents could start to rebuild their lives after their town was liberated from ISIS.

Now, thanks to your help:

-residents of Mukashafah had the chance to work together on a significant project, and to rebuild some of the community connections lost when they were scattered by war.

-residents can now focus on rebuilding, instead of having to worry about where to get clean water.

-residents can drink water without the fear of contracting cholera!

You are helping the Iraqi community of Mukashafah to rebuild.

There is a phrase that we hear over and over again, with variations in different communities. “We used to have ______________ until ISIS came.”  The people of Mukashafah used to have homes, clean water, and a community life. Thanks to you, that phrase is changing. You are helping them remove the words ‘used to’. You are helping them to rebuild. 

ISIS will not have the final word.

About Erin Wilson

Communications Officer for Preemptive Love Coalition, based in Iraq. Photographer + artist, storyteller + story gatherer, peace maker + bridge builder, student + teacher, unrepentant lover of unexpected beauty.

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You're Fighting Cholera in Mukashafah!
Clean Water In the Desert—Helping ISIS-Affected Families Rebuild
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