Safe Water ProjectWizou Lim 'Water is life'
Without access to clean, safe water
and good hygiene, people do not have
an equal chance of being healthy
Only 51% of Togo’s population has access to improved water sources and at a time when the need for good hygiene is more crucial than ever, only 17% of households have access to handwashing facilities with soap and water.
Together with our partners CO2 Balance and IADES-Togo, during the next two years, we will be rehabilitating 520 water boreholes in rural communities and bringing safe water to 150,000 people.
This safe water project will help to save approximately 200,000 tonnes of carbon per year, which is equivalent to the amount of carbon used by 20,000 people in the UK every year.
The burden of collecting water and firewood disproportionately falls on women and children. They often sacrifice their income generating activities and education to walk many miles each day. The chore of collecting water and wood from remote places can be dangerous, particularly for women, exposing them to gender based violence.
The majority of rural families have no choice but to depend on water from unsafe sources such as ponds and streams, filled with algae, bacteria and fecal and environmental contaminants.
Once water is collected, it is often consumed without treatment, which can cause severe illness, or it is boiled over open fires for purification, contributing to high levels of carbon emissions and deforestation.
Lack of water, sanitation and hygiene causes diseases that kill over 800 children everyday and causes millions of children worldwide to miss out on their education due to the ill health caused by waterbourne diseases.
This year we have partnered with CO2 Balance to bring safe water to vulnerable rural families. Over the next two years we are committed to rehabilitating 520 water boreholes. Each one will provide enough safe water for approximately 60 households.
Safe water is central in the fight against poverty, and to the resilience of communities to climate change. Placing a safe and reliable water source in the heart of the community removes the need for purification through boiling, and hours dedicated to collecting water.
This significantly lessens the pressure on the forests by reducing the need for firewood, whilst also reducing carbon emissions and the time spent collecting water and fuel.
The provision of safe water lowers cases of illnesses caused by waterborne diseases and gives households more time to spend on income generating activities, and allows children more time to spend on their education.
A huge step in supporting local government to tackle water insecurity in rural areas and changing community’s lives.
“No more suffering, no more suffering fetching water from the streams” sings Naomi Adzeyi as she uses the newly rehabilitated water pump in her village.
The pump here has been broken and unused for almost two years. When it first stopped working, the community members pooled their money together and paid a technician 50,000 xof (approximately £64) to repair the pump. When the technician arrived and wasn’t able to make the repairs, he left it broken and took their money.
Without any other way to repair it, it has been left unused and neglected. The women of the village continued to make their daily journey to a small, dirty pond filled with algae to collect water for drinking, washing and cooking.
One older woman told us how this water had made her sick in the past and she was keen to have acces to the borehole. She asked how much she would have to pay to use the pump, when we told her the repairs were being made for free and the water wouldn’t cost her anything, a huge smile spread across her face. Her face lit up with happiness and joy as she asked Christian, from IADES-Togo, to marry her!