“It was very cold inside and I thought if I go outside and walk I might feel warmer,” says Roqia, 11, standing outside her makeshift home in a snowy day in KABUL. 

Rogia doesn’t have enough clothes and proper slippers to keep her warm in a cold. Her family do not have sufficient firewood to keep the oven burning all the time and they only burn it once in a day and if the weather is freezing cold, they might burn it twice in a day. They burn plastics, cartons, packets and other waste materials they have collected during the summer season. 
“The house we have is out of plastic bags, blankets and mud. As soon as the oven dies the home gets cold,” she says. “It’s very cold during the night and we wakeup many times due to cold. Sometimes, I feel pain and burn in my feet, legs and back due to the cold.” 

Kabul gets very cold during the winter and last night only, the temperature dropped to -16 Celsius. Photo: Enayatullah Azad/ NRC
Afghanistan

Kabul von Kälte und Schnee getroffen

„Letzte Nacht war es sehr kalt. Ich wachte früh auf, weil ich so fror. Meine Füße waren wie Eis und ich hatte kein Gefühl mehr in den Zehen“, sagt sie und blickt auf ihre eiskalten Füße.

Wir treffen die elfjährige Raqia früh morgens nach einer klirrend kalten Nacht mit starkem Schneefall und Temperaturen von -16 Grad Celsius. Eine weiße Schneedecke hat sich über die Zelte von Hiwadwal gelegt – einer Zelt- und Hüttenstadt am Rande der Hauptstadt Kabul. Es ist nur eine von vielen solcher Siedlungen in Kabul.

Im vergangenen Jahr baute NRC Flüchtlingshilfe 154 neue Häuser und rüstete die Häuser von 330 weiteren binnenvertriebenen Familien in und um die Hauptstadt Kabul auf. Einige dieser Häuser befinden sich in der Siedlung Hiwadwal.

Die meisten Familien, die hier leben, wurden durch den Konflikt vertrieben. Manche sind erst vor Kurzem angekommen, während andere seit Jahren hier leben. Manche flüchteten ins benachbarte Pakistan, kehrten in ihre Heimat zurück und mussten dann erneut fliehen.

Zwei Drittel aller Vertriebenen haben in den regionalen Hauptstädten wie Kabul, Nangarhar, Kandahar, Balkh und Herat Zuflucht gesucht.

“It was very cold inside and I thought if I go outside and walk I might feel warmer,” says Roqia, 11, standing outside her makeshift home in a snowy day in KABUL. 

Rogia doesn’t have enough clothes and proper slippers to keep her warm in a cold. Her family do not have sufficient firewood to keep the oven burning all the time and they only burn it once in a day and if the weather is freezing cold, they might burn it twice in a day. They burn plastics, cartons, packets and other waste materials they have collected during the summer season. 
“The house we have is out of plastic bags, blankets and mud. As soon as the oven dies the home gets cold,” she says. “It’s very cold during the night and we wakeup many times due to cold. Sometimes, I feel pain and burn in my feet, legs and back due to the cold.” 

Kabul gets very cold during the winter and last night only, the temperature dropped to -16 Celsius. Photo: Enayatullah Azad/ NRC
Lesen Beschriftung „Drinnen ist es sehr kalt. Ich dachte, es wäre vielleicht wärmer, wenn ich rausgehe und mich ein bisschen bewege“, sagt Raqia, 11. Foto: Azad Enayatullah

„Dies sind die einzigen Kleidungsstücke und Schuhe, die ich habe“, sagt sie und zieht die Decke enger um sich.

Raqia steht vor der einfachen Behausung ihrer Familie, in eine Decke gewickelt. Darunter trägt sie dünne Sommerkleidung und an den Füßen lediglich ein Paar Plastiksandalen – ohne Socken.

Über 1,2 Millionen Binnenvertriebene in ganz Afghanistan leben in Zelt- und Hüttenstädten, sogenannten inoffiziellen Siedlungen. Über die Hälfte sind Kinder unter 18.

“It was very cold inside and I thought if I go outside and walk I might feel warmer,” says Roqia, 11, standing outside her makeshift home in a snowy day in KABUL. 

Rogia doesn’t have enough clothes and proper slippers to keep her warm in a cold. Her family do not have sufficient firewood to keep the oven burning all the time and they only burn it once in a day and if the weather is freezing cold, they might burn it twice in a day. They burn plastics, cartons, packets and other waste materials they have collected during the summer season. 
“The house we have is out of plastic bags, blankets and mud. As soon as the oven dies the home gets cold,” she says. “It’s very cold during the night and we wakeup many times due to cold. Sometimes, I feel pain and burn in my feet, legs and back due to the cold.” 

Kabul gets very cold during the winter and last night only, the temperature dropped to -16 Celsius. Photo: Enayatullah Azad/ NRC

Ihr bescheidenes Heim besteht aus Plastik, Planen, Teppichen und Lehm. „Wir haben einen einfachen Ofen, aber kein Brennmaterial. Wir verbrennen Pappe und Plastik, das wir im Sommer gesammelt haben, aber das reicht nicht, um es warmzuhalten. Wir feuern den Ofen normalerweise einmal am Tag an, aber wenn es so kalt ist wie jetzt, zünden wir ihn auch oft zweimal an.“

Sobald die Wärme des Ofens nachlässt, wird es eiskalt. „Nachts ist es sehr kalt und ich wache früh auf, weil ich so friere. Meine Füße sind wie Eis und manchmal habe ich kein Gefühl mehr in den Zehen“, sagt sie und blickt auf ihre eiskalten Füße.

NRC shelter and WASH team doing a walkabout in Hiwadwal IDP Settlement in Kabul on a snowfall day. It’s first winter snow in Kabul and thousands of IDP families are living in substandard makeshift making them disposed to freezing temperature. Photo: Enayatullah Azad / NRC

Nach heftigen Schneefällen und Temperaturen nahe -20 Grad sind viele Zelte und Häuser in diesen Siedlungen zusammengebrochen. NRC Flüchtlingshilfe schickte ein Team in die Siedlungen, um sich einen Überblick über die Schäden und den vorhandenen Bedarf zu verschaffen.

Shahnaz makeshift home collapsed under the weight of heavy snow in an informal settlement in eastern Kabul this week. The family is now forced to live with neighbors as the temperature drops up to -20C during the night. 

Shahnaz, 34, a widow was sleeping with her three children when the roof of their substandard makeshift home fill in onto them and now, she stays with three other families in shared two-room house in the camp. 

“We were in deep sleep when the beam broke and the roof collapsed over us. I grabbed my children to protect and start shouting then the neighbors rushed to help us,” Shahnaz said. Several makeshift homes have reportedly collapsed during the last snow fall and many families are either staying with neighbors or with relatives. NRC with support from donors, German Development Bank (KFW) and Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA) improved and upgraded 330 shelters and built another 154 permanent homes across the capital, Kabul. Our team have observed that many of these upgraded homes are hosting more than one family. 

Shahnaz and her three children are now staying with one of the neighbors. “Thanks God, we are not alone here and if the government is not being able to support us, the people do care about each other with their little in hand,” she says. 

The mother says she begs on the streets to protect her children. “The two biggest challenges we were facing was food and the cold and now, shelter is also included on the list,” she added. Photo: Enayatullah Azad / NRC
Lesen Beschriftung Shanaz und ihr Sohn vor dem Nachbarhaus, in dem sie derzeit leben.

Das Team trifft auf Shanaz, 34, Witwe und dreifache Mutter. „Ich schlief mit meinen drei Kindern, als das Dach plötzlich über uns zusammenbrach. Zum Glück wurde niemand verletzt. Ich rief um Hilfe und kurz darauf kam ein Nachbar, um uns zu helfen“, sagt sie.

Shahnaz makeshift home collapsed under the weight of heavy snow in an informal settlement in eastern Kabul this week. The family is now forced to live with neighbors as the temperature drops up to -20C during the night. 

Shahnaz, 34, a widow was sleeping with her three children when the roof of their substandard makeshift home fill in onto them and now, she stays with three other families in shared two-room house in the camp. 

“We were in deep sleep when the beam broke and the roof collapsed over us. I grabbed my children to protect and start shouting then the neighbors rushed to help us,” Shahnaz said. Several makeshift homes have reportedly collapsed during the last snow fall and many families are either staying with neighbors or with relatives. NRC with support from donors, German Development Bank (KFW) and Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA) improved and upgraded 330 shelters and built another 154 permanent homes across the capital, Kabul. Our team have observed that many of these upgraded homes are hosting more than one family. 

Shahnaz and her three children are now staying with one of the neighbors. “Thanks God, we are not alone here and if the government is not being able to support us, the people do care about each other with their little in hand,” she says. 

The mother says she begs on the streets to protect her children. “The two biggest challenges we were facing was food and the cold and now, shelter is also included on the list,” she added. Photo: Enayatullah Azad / NRC
Lesen Beschriftung Shanaz’ Haus ist nicht das Einzige, das durch die starken Schneefälle beschädigt und unbewohnbar wurde. Viele Familien sind bei hilfsbereiten Nachbarn eingezogen.

„Gott sei Dank sind wir am Leben und haben gute Nachbarn. Sie haben uns aufgenommen, obwohl sie kaum Platz haben. Die Kinder und ich wohnen nun mit drei weiteren Familien in einem kleinen Zweizimmerhaus.“

Shahnaz makeshift home collapsed under the weight of heavy snow in an informal settlement in eastern Kabul this week. The family is now forced to live with neighbors as the temperature drops up to -20C during the night. 

Shahnaz, 34, a widow was sleeping with her three children when the roof of their substandard makeshift home fill in onto them and now, she stays with three other families in shared two-room house in the camp. 

“We were in deep sleep when the beam broke and the roof collapsed over us. I grabbed my children to protect and start shouting then the neighbors rushed to help us,” Shahnaz said. Several makeshift homes have reportedly collapsed during the last snow fall and many families are either staying with neighbors or with relatives. NRC with support from donors, German Development Bank (KFW) and Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA) improved and upgraded 330 shelters and built another 154 permanent homes across the capital, Kabul. Our team have observed that many of these upgraded homes are hosting more than one family. 

Shahnaz and her three children are now staying with one of the neighbors. “Thanks God, we are not alone here and if the government is not being able to support us, the people do care about each other with their little in hand,” she says. 

The mother says she begs on the streets to protect her children. “The two biggest challenges we were facing was food and the cold and now, shelter is also included on the list,” she added. Photo: Enayatullah Azad / NRC
Lesen Beschriftung Shanaz und ihre drei Kinder sind bei ihrem Nachbarn untergekommen, der sein kleines Zweizimmerhaus bereits mit zwei weiteren Familien teilt.

Shanaz bettelt in Kabul auf der Straße um Essen für sich und ihre drei Kinder. Jetzt hat sie noch eine weitere Herausforderung zu bewältigen.

„Unsere zwei größten Probleme waren Nahrung und die Kälte. Jetzt kommt zu der Liste noch das fehlende Dach über dem Kopf dazu.“

Mirwais, 42, is taking his one and half year-old son Ramin, to a doctor. Ramin has been suffering headache, fever and abdominal pain in the past three days. “he has been suffering in the past three days and I was hoping he could get well without being taken to the doctor. I can’t afford their medicine and he is the second one I’m taking to the doctor,” Said Mirwais.

Kabul and major parts of Afghanistan is blanketed in snow and Mirwais and thousands other displaced men who are earning through daily wages can’t find anymore to protect their families. 

“We can’t afford fuel or firewood to warm the room and cook. All we burn is plastics and cartons and that makes our children sick,” said Mirwais. Photo: Enayatullah Azad / NRC
Lesen Beschriftung Mirwais und sein Sohn Ramin auf dem Weg zum Arzt.

Dann treffen wir Mirwais, 42. Er ist mit seinem anderthalbjährigen Sohn Ramin auf dem Weg zum Arzt. Er hat seit drei Tagen Fieber, Kopf- und Bauchschmerzen.

„Ich hatte die Hoffnung, dass die Schmerzen nachlassen würden und dass ich ihn nicht zum Arzt bringen müsste. Ich habe kein Geld für Medikamente und es ist in diesem Winter schon das zweite Mal, dass ich eins unserer Kinder zum Arzt bringen muss.“

Mirwais, 42, is taking his one and half year-old son Ramin, to a doctor. Ramin has been suffering headache, fever and abdominal pain in the past three days. “he has been suffering in the past three days and I was hoping he could get well without being taken to the doctor. I can’t afford their medicine and he is the second one I’m taking to the doctor,” Said Mirwais.

Kabul and major parts of Afghanistan is blanketed in snow and Mirwais and thousands other displaced men who are earning through daily wages can’t find anymore to protect their families. 

“We can’t afford fuel or firewood to warm the room and cook. All we burn is plastics and cartons and that makes our children sick,” said Mirwais. Photo: Enayatullah Azad / NRC
Lesen Beschriftung Ramin hat seit drei Tagen Fieber, Kopf- und Bauchschmerzen.

Insgesamt haben 30 Prozent der Afghaninnen und Afghanen keinen Zugang zu grundlegendster medizinischer Versorgung. Diejenigen, die in den am stärksten betroffenen Gebieten leben, in denen der humanitäre Zugang erschwert ist, leiden am meisten.

Mirwais sorgt sich um seine Kinder. „Wir können uns kein Brennmaterial oder Feuerholz leisten, um unser Haus zu heizen oder zu kochen. Das Einzige, was wir haben, ist Plastik und Pappe. Das zu verbrennen ist hochgiftig und macht die Kinder krank“, sagt er, während der durch die Schneewehen zum Arzt eilt.

Shawan, 6, and his siblings are living a mud house in Hiwadwal IDP settlement in Kabul. The family was living under a substandard makeshift shelter last winter. NRC with support from German Development Bank (KFW) and Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA)
 improved and upgraded 330 shelters, including Shawan and his family’s home. NRC has also provided another 154-permanent home for internally displaced and refugee-returnee families in and outside Kabul this summer. Shawan and his family are very happy that have been protected during this harsh winter weather. Photo: Enayatullah Azad/NRC
Lesen Beschriftung Shawan, 6, gehört zu den vielen Familien, die Hilfe bei der Reparatur ihres Hauses bekommen haben.

Im selben Viertel treffen wir den sechsjährigen Shawan. Den vergangenen Winter verbrachte er ebenfalls in einer Unterkunft aus Plastik, Teppichen und Lehm. Shawans Familie gehörte zu denen, deren Häuser von NRC Flüchtlingshilfe aufgebessert wurden.

„Jetzt müssen wir nicht mehr frieren und haben es drinnen warm“, sagt er und winkt uns durch das Fenster des neuen Hauses zu.

Nach den jüngsten Schneefällen stellt unser Team fest, dass viele dieser Häuser nun mehr als eine Familie beherbergen.

NRC shelter and WASH team doing a walkabout in Hiwadwal IDP Settlement in Kabul on a snowfall day. It’s first winter snow in Kabul and thousands of IDP families are living in substandard makeshift making them disposed to freezing temperature. Photo: Enayatullah Azad / NRC

Obwohl die Kinder in den Siedlungen rund um Kabul viele Sorgen haben, sind sie wie die meisten Kinder. Trotz der Tatsache, dass Kälte und Schnee Not und Leid verursachen, finden sie im Alltag Freude. Vor einem kleinen Laden haben zwei Jungen einen Schneemann gebaut. Für den Moment ist der Spaß, den sie im Schnee haben, alles, was zählt.

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