Water for life: Improving access to water in Northern Uganda

Ugandan girl at her new borehole

In partnership with Kiyinda Mityana Diocese in Uganda, VMM have had incredible success with helping over 5000 people access clean water for the first time this year. The Misean Cara funded project involved a variety of activities to improve the lives of communities in North West Uganda, where access to clean water is a serious issue. Many families had a 3-4 kilometre daily walk to get water for drinking, cooking and washing.

The project constructed 2 boreholes and 60 water supply tanks to ensure villages could easily access water. Juliet Namuddu is a 66 year old resident of Kitonya village who cares for four grandchildren whose parents have passed away. As she is too frail to fetch water, the children used to have to travel 3 kilometres to collect water each day, a trip taking sometimes up to an hour and a half. This was not a safe journey for the children. However, as a result of the borehole in her village they now have water on their doorstep!

“I am so thankful to the diocese of Kiyinda Mityana and VMM for bringing a water source to our village. Our children can now easily fetch water and they now have time for their homework and are free to play. May the good Lord bless you,”  Juliet Namuddu

A schoolgirl in Kiyinda Mityana Diocese uses the handwashing station beside her new latrine. Latrines are built using locally available materials to ensure communities can continue to build them after the project ends.

Not only was water an issue, but toilet facilities were non-existent in many target villages before the project started. 562 high quality pit latrines were built and people now have a safe place to use the toilet.

We thank Kiyinda Mityana Diocese for coming up with such a good project of latrine construction. For a very long time, people were going to the bushes for defecation, waited for darkness to shower and others digging small holes next to their homesteads for excreta disposal. As I speak now, people have gotten what to use for such activities and we are living a better life as a village that is free of disease.” Nakachwa Rose of Katuugo parish.

And there’s more! Hygiene education sessions raised community awareness of  handwashing and safe food preparation. Hundreds of families received energy-saving stoves and improved kitchen and bathing facilities.

The project’s results will be sustained by Community Water and Sanitation Committees, who have taken on the responsibility of repairing the boreholes and tanks and supporting villages to continue using their new-found knowledge.

 

 

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