Saad Ibrahim Khalil, 36, lives in Bab Al Sham neighborhood in Mosul. “My family and I suffered a great deal during ISIL. We were forced to leave our ancestral home and seek refuge,” he shares.
When he returned home with his family after liberation, his house was damaged, and there was no electricity. “When we returned home, in addition to witnessing heartbreaking devastation, we did not have basic services like electricity.”
Currently, Saad is a construction worker earning around US$300-400 every month. He lives with his wife and five children.
The Bab Al Shams electricity substation that supplied power to Saad’s house was left completed destroyed during the conflict. “We did not have electricity for over a year after liberation. And when it returned, we would only receive electricity for a few hours in the day,” he adds.
This forced Saad to buy a power generator, costing him half of his monthly income. "There would be days when we had to run the generator all day due to prolonged power cuts. We needed it especially during the cold winters and in the evening, so my children could study,” he says.
Today, life is different for Saad and his family.
Through UNDP Iraq’s Funding Facility for Stabilization, the Bab Al Sham Electricity Substation was rehabilitated. This was possible thanks to generous funding from United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
It now supplies power to over 35,000 residents living in and around. Improving access to electricity plays a vital role in alleviating barriers to eradicating poverty. Through the programme, 39 substations destroyed during the conflict have been restored in Mosul.
"As a daily wager, I work hard to make ends meet while trying to build back the life we once had [before the conflict]. Restoring basic services such as electricity has improved the quality of our lives drastically. Thank you for the support,” Saad shares.
The cost of electricity is around US$20-40 every month. For residents like Saad, having access to electricity has eased the daunting task of rebuilding their lives after one of the most brutal conflicts in Iraq's history.
About the programme:
This project was implemented through UNDP’s flagship programme, the Funding Facility for Stabilization (FFS), with generous support from USAID.
Since its inception in 2015, FFS has worked with the Government of Iraq and local actors to ensure safe, dignified, and voluntary returns and to lay the foundation for the successful reintegration of displaced populations into the community. Read more here.