Sitting in her shelter in Kenya’s Kakuma refugee camp, 41-year-old Nora can finally relax.
Under the white mosquito netting that covers her bed, she knows she and her family are protected, in more ways than one. And after over three years of struggle, they can now focus on rebuilding their lives.
Nora was forced to flee her home in South Sudan in 2016, when violence swept across her state and claimed her husband’s life. Left with five children and two grandchildren, she began a harrowing journey, traveling for over a month before finally finding refuge in Kakuma.
Life in the camp has not been easy for Nora, who has had to find a way to provide for her family all by herself. But at least in Kakuma they are safe. “We don’t hear the sounds of guns anymore,” she says, with a relieved smile.
UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, has supported Nora and her family since they arrived in Kenya. The family of eight has received shelter and access to vital healthcare, and all the children are now back in school.
Nora is also among the thousands of refugees in the camp who have received mosquito nets, to help protect their families from malaria.
With support from the UN Foundation’s Nothing But Nets campaign, UNHCR has distributed bed nets as part of an effort to combat the deadly disease, which is transmitted by mosquitoes. Because malaria is endemic to Kakuma, refugee families and children in the area are extremely vulnerable to the disease. Since 2000, Nothing But Nets has helped save the lives of an estimated 6.8 million people around the world, by providing communities with long-lasting bed nets, diagnostic tests and medical treatments.
“The mosquito net is very important,” Nora says. She speaks from experience – not long ago some of her children got malaria, and Nora herself spent four days in a clinic.
Now, with the netting provided by UNHCR and the UN Foundation, she can better protect her family.