CED worked in partnership with the Anglican Diocese of Ruaha in a major community based rural water, sanitation and health & hygiene education programme in the Pawaga area in the north western corner of Iringa District. Pawaga is one of the climatically less well favoured areas of the region where some 16,000 people, centred on 8 villages, had no access to clean water.
The people living in Pawaga are among the poorest in Tanzania. A programme of health and hygiene education, improved sanitation and the construction of a permanent clean water supply was completed in April 2011.
The work involved drawing water from the Little Ruaha River and after simple purification taking it by gravity to villages along the valley. Each village was responsible for supplying labour and digging trenches for its own network of tap-stands.
The 990,000 Euro programme was funded 75% by the European Union, and the balance by contributions from Tearfund UK, Tear Australia, Wilmslow Wells for Africa and CED. The site work was managed by Diocesan personnel aided by CED and helped build up the capacity of the Diocese’s development department. CED part time Project Engineer, Rob Wakeling, spent 3 weeks on site every 2nd month. Despite sharp rises in commodity prices, especially fuel, cement, and petro-chemical based products, such as uPVC and HDPE pipe the team was able to deliver the project through the injection of further funds from Trusts and from CED itself.
The benefits of the project include:
- Women and girls no longer have to walk several kilometres each day to collect water.
- This means women are freed to spend their time caring for children, tending crops etc.
- School attendance has increased as children no longer spend all day collecting water.
- Incidences of serious diarrhoea no longer dominate the work of the local dispensaries
Both children and adults are healthier than previously.
- Men are more prepared to carry out menial tasks like washing their own clothes because they do not have long walks to fetch water.