[gpt3]rewrite this title with a high degree of perplexity and burstiness Kenya: Residents on a mission to reduce flooding damage/gpt]
In a Nairobi slum, a group of volunteers with Weather Mtaani are ardently working to reduce the extensive damage caused by flooding in their region. Armed with shovels, brushes, and rakes, the volunteers are clearing debris and waste that hinders the waterways and drainage at this informal settlement. The lack of efficient drainage systems leads to significant flooding during heavy rains, as it gets clogged with rubbish such as plastics, clothing, and sludge. To counter this, the Kenya Meteorological Department has trained youth from informal settlements to interpret weather forecasts.
Weather Mtaani volunteer, Ann Atieno, explains that it is a race against time to clear as much rubbish as possible before the rain arrives. The group receives weekly weather forecasts, seasonal outlooks, and warnings from KMD, which they translate into the local language and send to other volunteers and residents via WhatsApp or SMS. Community leaders are also trained to interpret the weather forecasts, which they then translate into Swahili and local dialects.
Weather Mtaani initially began as a pilot project in 2019 under Developing Risk Awareness through Joint Action (DARAJA), run by the Weather and Climate Innovation Services for Africa program. It aims to help slum residents interpret weather forecasts, plan their day-to-day activities, and save lives and property. The project was so successful that the KMD continued to send weather forecasts to Weather Mtaani leaders after the pilot project ended.
However, due to the previous flash flooding that resulted in fatalities and destruction in Kenya slums, the group is in a constant state of panic and urgency to ensure that the drainage systems are clean before and during the rainy season. The volunteers are dedicated to doing their part and are continuously working to reduce the damage and risks caused by flooding in their area.