Kurani Ainkawa Multi-Purpose Centre: Empowering a diverse community of IDPs, refugees and vulnerable population in Erbil

Kurani Ainkawa Centre Erbil Refugees
Mohammed is one of the many dedicated community volunteers in KAMPC. Photo: UNDP Iraq/2015

Erbil, 22 December 2015 - “In August 2014, my life turned upside down when we fled from our home in Sinjar and ISIL captured our town,” says Mohammed, 24.

Highlights

  • “We walked two days without water and food, not really knowing where to go and whether we would survive. There was shooting and fear all around us”
  • Mohammed is now an active member of the UNDP-supported Kurani Ainkawa Multi-Purpose Centre (KAMPC)
  • Through ICRRP, UNDP focuses on improving the delivery of public services and providing direct support to Government crisis and coordination mechanisms and institutions

Mohammed was a high-school student when he escaped with his family from Sinjar last summer together with thousands of other residents. While many of the local population were airlifted off the nearby mountain, thousands of Yazidis and other displaced Iraqis who came later found themselves trapped.

“We walked two days without water and food, not really knowing where to go and whether we would survive. There was shooting and fear all around us.”

Mohammed was lucky. With the help of Syrian Kurdish and Peshmerga Forces, he and his family members made it to Dohuk and later to the Kurani Ainkawa quarter of Erbil. He is now an active member of the UNDP-supported Kurani Ainkawa Multi-Purpose Centre (KAMPC). He enjoys organizing community sports and dialogue events to promote peaceful cohabitation and to deepen the sense of community in the diverse neighbourhood, where a high density of displaced people and refugees live amongst the local vulnerable population.

“Before I got engaged in KAMPC’s activities, I felt lonely and insecure. But when I got involved in KAMPC’s participatory assessment as a representative of the IDPs to recommend which types of vocational trainings and community activities the community needed, I gained confidence in humanity again,” Mohammed remembers. “I realized that so many of the other IDPs, refugees and host community members face the same challenges as my family and I every day. We can help each other. KAMPC brings the community together and empowers us tremendously as their trainings provide skills and experience to those who desperately need to sustain their families. KAMPC has changed me and impacted the way I think about everybody’s role in a community. When I will go back to Sinjar, I will bring KAMPC’s community spirit to my town and organize community activities myself,” Mohammed says.

Through its Iraq Crisis Response and Resilience Programme (ICRRP), UNDP focuses on improving the delivery of public services and providing direct support to Government crisis and coordination mechanisms and institutions. A specific programme component focuses on providing livelihood opportunities and promoting dialogue amongst displaced, host families and refugees. The KAMPC programme falls under this category. UNDP has also been providing support to improve housing condition in Kurani Ainkawa community in collaboration with UN-Habitat and the Ministry of Planning of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG).

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