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Re Alliance Webinar | Introducing water harvesting guidelines for growing food in camps

Re Alliance Webinar | Introducing water harvesting guidelines for growing food in camps

What is greywater, and how can you safely use it in refugee camps and settlements? How can you capture and use rainwater for food growing in contexts of displacement? This one hour session shares learnings from a recent project funded by Malteser International and conducted by Re-Alliance and Syrian Academic Expertise around food growing in Syrian Internally Displaced Peoples' (IDP) camps. The session focuses on the collection, storage and use of rainfall and greywater. Working in three IDP camp sites in A’zaz and Jarablus in Northwest Syria, the pilot project tested the viability of creating vegetable gardens to grow food irrigated in part by harvested rainwater and greywater. Research has shown the benefits of gardening to those living in temporary settlements by providing fresh and nutritious food, meaningful activity, a sense of belonging or home, and feelings of well-being, particularly in the wake of trauma. It has also shown how replenishing soils, creating healthy water cycles, space for biodiversity, planting trees and perennial crops, and minimising waste can have an equally positive impact on both human and ecological health. In areas of limited rainfall and high temperatures, nearly all food crops will need additional irrigation water to supplement rainfall. By identifying and promoting simple, low tech options for capturing and re-using greywater and rainwater for irrigation, and creating compost from food waste, growing food can become an accessible option for many households. Speakers include Mary Mellett, Juliet Millican, and Jackie Kearney from the Re-Alliance team; Dr Shaher Abdullateef, founder of Syrian Academic Expertise (SAE); and Richard Luff, independent humanitarian consultant and WASH advisor.
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