Turkana west sub county residents have been relieved the burden of having to travel long distances to a mortuary to preserve the bodies of their loved ones who pass on.
The community in the sub county identified a morgue as among the key priorities to be funded under the Kenya Development Response to Displacement Impacts Project (KDRDIP).
(KDRDIP) is a National Government initiative, supported by the World Bank to improve lives of the refugee-hosting communities.
It is a Community Driven Development (CDD) where communities identify, plan, implement, monitor and sustain their own development projects. The projects identified by the communities are integrated into the Community Development Plans (CDPs) before they receive funding.
Kakuma sub county hospital project management committee chairman Patrick Tioko said the morgue will save the residents costs of transporting the bodies of their loved ones to Lodwar, 120 km away.
‘We used to spend Sh10,000 to transport a body to Lodwar county referral hospital for preservation and spend a similar amount to transport the body back for burial,’ said Tioko.
He adds that this excluded transportation costs for friends and relatives escorting the body to the morgue.
Antonina Ekal, the project treasurer is full of gratitude to KDRDIP for coming to the rescue of the sub county residents.
‘The mortuary will really ease our suffering during mourning by saving us money,’ she said.
The project also includes maternity wing, male ward, new laboratory and fencing of the hospital.
KDRDIP project manager Wilfred Omari said the morgue was one of the projects that will have a big impact on the lives of the locals.
He was accompanying a team from World Bank led by team leader Mathew Stephens who were on a mission to assess the impact of the project.
Stephens said the team was out to assess the project impact on the lives of the residents of Turkana west and beneficiaries of the funds. Groups are allocated Sh. 500,000 to help them run business and support their livelihoods.
A total of Sh400 million has been disbursed to 700 groups to enable them support their livelihoods.
Omari said the project which was scheduled to end in April next year needs a funding extension to reach the targeted needs of the community.
“In the last two years we accomplished 10 percent of what the community needs,” he said.
He added that the project has sunk 41 boreholes, constructed 48 classrooms and equipped them with desks.
By Peter Gitonga