Government and UN agency provides homes for Afghan returnees
21 April 2009 - One thousand Afghan returnees will be able to build their own houses as a result of action taken by the Government of Afghanistan and the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT) shelter project in the eastern province of Nangarhar.
750 returnees from the Chamtala returnee camp and 250 from the Shikhmisri returnee camp in the Surkhrud district of Nangarhar province will build their houses on land given to them by the Department of Refugees and Repatriation with construction materials provided by the United Nations.
Sayed Arif is a returnee who has received his land plot and has already started building his own house. “My family lived for one year in a tent and for one year with relatives. But now, after completion of a survey, I will receive construction materials,” said Arif.
UN-HABITAT will provide pre-fabricated windows, doors, glass panes, and materials for lintels, ceiling beams and roofing.
To help returnees build their houses over 20 community members have been trained on building indigenous and earthquake-resistant homes.
UN-HABITAT also plans to build a basic health centre and a community centre in the Chamtala returnee settlement in the coming months.
The one-year shelter project costs US$ 1,250,000 and will provide homes for between five and six thousand Afghans.
UN-HABITAT has been operating in Afghanistan since 1992.
By Shafiqullah Waak, UNAMA