Putting Benin's vulnerable people on the map

Our work in Benin

The Netherlands Red Cross is supporting Croix Rouge Benin to decrease the number of children under 5 suffering from waterborne diseases and fecal in the boroughs of Kessounou (common Dangbo) and Zoungamé (common Aguégués) in the department of Ouémé. One of the activities to achieve this is to perform field assessments, that identify vulnerable people. Detailed maps of the project area are vital to properly sample the assessment. Also the maps contribute to the logistical operation and the continued monitoring of the project targets against the residences of people. The Netherlands Red Cross will through this work also start investing in a local HOT community in Benin, and is seeking opporunities to make the necessary hardware available and to provide training were needed.

Scroll through the pictures below to get an idea of the Red Cross in Benin.

Impression of the area

Scroll through the pictures below to get an idea of what these objects look like on the ground.

Start mapping!

The target for this task is to map roads and buildings.

Imagery: Use Bing Imagery

Buildings: Please label all buildings as general buildings. The local community will add their detailed local knowledge to the map after we complete the task.

Roads: Map roads and smaller paths for as far as you can follow them.

“The road conditions in Africa do not always correspond to their economic and social role. A road typology should be based on the road importance and not on the surface or the visual appearance of the road”. --Highway Tag Africa, OpenStreetMap Wiki

The roads in the villages along the river Ouémé are prone to seasonal flooding. Therefore, the roads there need to be tagged with the following tags:
  • flood_prone=yes
  • seasonal=yes
It can be hard to know the economic and social role of a road, but we can guess that a road is important to trace if it connects other roads, clusters of buildings, or towns and villages. Please use the tags below, taken from the OpenStreetMap Wiki:
  • Tertiary Road: The roads interconnecting villages and the major streets in towns of some importance.
For those on the ground in Benin, there are specific mapping targets.

Buildings: Add specific labels to buildings to classify it as health stations, schools, etc. Benin is full of "compounds". Those are structures, for example a health station or a school, which are typically surrounded by a wall, with one or more entries. Local mappers could update the building features to separate walls and buildings and mark the compound area.
Roads: Verify road types and add specific tags:
  • Tertiary Road: The roads interconnecting villages and the major streets in towns of some importance.
  • Residential Road: The roads in residential areas except for major streets that interconnect with various roads (i.e. primary, secondary, tertiary).
  • Unclassified Road: The roads serving for interconnection of smaller villages and hamlets.
  • Track: The small roads going outside the residential areas, mainly for agricultural and forestry purposes. In general these roads do not have a connecting function with other roads.

Water points: In Benin-villages the wells and water-points are very important. I find that development agencies keep putting more wells down all the time and sometimes they seem to be unaware about existing wells near by.
  • amenity drinking_water: the tricky bit here in Benin is the definition of fit-for-drinking; if we tag something as drinking water, the quality might be fine for certain people and make other people sick. Or the quality can change and often the mappers are short-term-guests and cannot do follow-up
  • man_made water_well: This one looks promising, but according to the Map Features page, it does not even get rendered.
  • amenity watering_place: This is meant for animals, but you know how local wells can be integrated for humans and the off-flow for animals

To contribute, click on the 'map Benin' link below and choose a single grid task from the Tasking Manager. Editing is handled by the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team's Tasking Manager.For more detailed instructions on the task manager and ID editor, check out the project Mapping Guide.

Task 3 - Porto-Novo Benin Task 4 - Porto-Novo Benin

Before and After

Below is a view of the efforts of missing maps on this task up to today


Before mapping event

See changes to this area in openstreetmap