The quality of drinking-water is a powerful environmental determinant of health. Assurance of drinking-water safety is a foundation for the prevention and control of waterborne diseases (WHO).
Undoubtedly you’ve heard about what Breaking Ground and the Baleveng community have been up to this past year. And surely you’ve seen the project updates since last January when the One Day’s Wages matching campaign was successfully completed. On top of that, I bet you needn’t be reminded about the need for clean water in so many parts of the world and of what these women were saying about Baleveng’s water problems.
So, while the community had begun this project independently long ago, we are very excited to have reached this point today at which we can officially say toghether that Baleveng residents have gathered to share in and celebrate their first sips of water from their five new community taps.
The situation with water around the world looks different depending on how you peer into the problem. Globally, the water crisis includes desertification and political strife over water sources. This is compounded by the commodification of a vital resource, which takes the rights to water away from individuals and places them in the contracts of big business. At the local level, the water crisis today is often more to do with sanitation and access. The Baleveng Water Project has transformed the water available within this village. Far from the original contaminated collection point, the current water distribution design has dramatically reduced the distance anyone now needs to travel to get water from approximately 5km to just a mere 500m. Other outcomes include a dedicated spigot at the primary school; an option for individual households to have a private tap; maintenance fees collected and managed by the community; and an accompanying education program to support the hygiene and sanitation practices that are necessary to keep water clean from tap to mouth.
Join us as we celebrate this exciting time in Baleveng. As something that is taken for granted in so many of our lives, take a moment today to imagine the feeling in households around this village that now know there is little to worry about while collecting, cooking, farming, drinking, bathing, and cleaning - all those things, all day long that take something so simple: water.
Clean, fresh water.