New humanitarian hub opened close to Mosul, Iraq

Published: 2017-08-08

IHP brings humanitarian actors closer to the front of the Mosul response, through the establishment of a humanitarian overnight facility in Adhbah, in northern Iraq. Photos: Jens Bjerg Sand (DEMA)

The total driving time of four hours each direction constitues an obstacle for humanitarian personnel.The distance from Adhbah to Erbil , where most humanitarian actors have their main base, is only 80 km away, but due to congestion and security restrictions it takes several hours to travel between the two locations. In order to bring more efficiency and strengthened humanitarian presence in these areas around Mosul, the United Nations turned to IHP to support with establishing an overnight solution, resulting in a humanitarian hub for overnight stays in Adhbah.

In March 2017 the Humanitarian Country Team requested IHP and WFP to set-up a humanitarian hub in the Mosul area for a duration of at least six months. Assessments were carried out by IHP, WFP and UNDSS to identify suitable sites for such a facility. A primary site was identified within a few days but due to lead times, running costs and security considerations another location was preferred. The new location, in Adhbah, 20 km from the West Mosul frontline, was selected for a temporary overnight accommodation hub for UN personnel. The hub is situated adjacent to the hospital compound in Adhbah and is composed of two completely refurbished accommodation caravan units with commodities such as shower, toilets, internet connectivity and so on. The hub has space for 9 guest and has been built according to and is compliant with UN security rules and regulations. The hub i Adhbah allows the UN community to gain access to sites in and around Mosul, where the devastation is almost complete and humanitarian needs are extreme.

IHP has been the key partner from the start of the project and has been involved in conducting the site assessments, project planning and the implementation of construction works through contracting of local service providers. IHP has contributed with furnishing and upgrading of pre-existing caravans, land preparation, installation of water system and water tanks as well as electrical system and generators, installations of security measures such as gates and walls and so on.

"Plans have had to be changed drastically from one week to another, but we have been prepared and aware of the complex operational environment in Iraq from the beginning and included that in our way of working. We have had a constructive and forward looking perspective and partnership with WFP throughout this whole process". - Says Henni Boudjema (MSB) IHP Lead Project Manager.  

The project has been implemented by MSB (Sweden) and DEMA (Denmark) in partnership with the United Nations World Food Programme, upon the request of the Humanitarian Country Team for Iraq. The project has been funded by the governments of Sweden, Denmark and Luxembourg as part of the IHP contribution, as well as the Pooled Fund for Iraq.