Livelihood Survey in Ceel Dheer PDF Print

“I have not earned any money for the last year, my children and I have been depending on help from well wishers”,   says Hawa, a 50 year old mother of eight, during a discussion with a CISP researcher in front of a temporary shed that she calls home. Mama Hawa, is one of the many heads of families that took part in a survey conducted to facilitate the implementation of a livelihood project.  720 households, of which more than 80% were displaced from their area of origin, participated in the survey carried out by CISP in July to better understand how a cash distribution programme would improve the living conditions of vulnerable individuals.


How much income does a Household earn per year? What are the main sources of income? These are amongst the key questions CISP asked during the study.  64.3% of the respondents earned less than 1,000,000 Somali Shillings, which translates to approximately USD 50, in one year; whereas 32.6% earned between USD 50 and USD 150 per year.  A common type of support received by the household is Zaqat, traditional charitable giving practiced among Muslim families.  Money received from friends and relatives’ living abroad has been the single most important source of livelihood for many Somalis for the last two decades. The research showed that only 88% of those surveyed had access to these remittances; 10% said they receive donations from friends and family, money lenders, fishing cooperatives, traders and savings groups.  Those who got assistance, received mostly food, some got non-food items while only a few received cash. Food aid is the main source of food for 64% of households; that is food given to them by other people and not government or organisations. 27% said they produce their own food, 3% bought food, while 3% bartered, borrowed or gathered from the wild. Most of those interviewed feel they don’t have a choice; they take what they are given.  ‘”I have to feed maize even to my younger children”, says Ali, a father of nine.


The study revealed that none of the households interviewed had taken part in any cash for work or cash for food programmes in the previous 12 months.  “We have not seen any food distributed in this area, my family of ten relies on charity,” remarks Salad a father. This was also the case for Maryan a mother of six: “my husband and I have been unable to find work or access assistance; we rely on the help of neighbours”.


CISP’s cash distribution programme is intended to benefit the residents of Ceel Dheer in the coastal area of Galgaduud Region of Somalia. The families – of which at least 70% are female headed households - will be supported with at least 30% of their minimum expenditure through unconditional cash grants.




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