When floods came to his village in Mali, Gaboukoro Traoré didn’t have much time to pack. “We were alerted by the arrival of runoff water just a few hours before it reached my village, so we were only able to save a few materials and animals. My whole house collapsed and was washed away.”
From August 24 to September 3, 2019, heavy rains fell across six of Mali’s 10 regions, affecting more than 137,000 people. Schools, homes and markets were destroyed and many people lost their homes and livelihoods.
Gaboukoro lived in the commune of Falou, where he was a farmer. The money he earned from farming helped support his household of 52 family members. When the flood came, both his home and the lands where he farmed were destroyed.
“Our house with more than 17 sleeping rooms, 5 toilets, a kitchen, animal pens and a well has been definitively erased from the map of my village,” he says.
Fortunately, Islamic Relief was able to quickly respond, “Forty-eight hours after the disaster, Islamic Relief Canada was there finding out what the most urgent needs were. A week later, they came back with everything we needed,” says Gaboukoro.
Gaboukoro and his large family are currently living with other people in his village whose homes were not affected by the flood. He says the materials Islamic Relief provided have been helpful to him. “We now have access to equipment for safe water. We sleep under mosquito nets to be protected against malaria and other waterborne diseases.
“Thanks to this assistance, a great part of our suffering has been relieved.”