Stories of Water, by Blue Planet Network, is a collection of photo essays shines light on real lives changed by water. The stories are submitted by volunteer photographers who have visited communities around the world in need of or benefiting from Blue Planet Network member projects. Full member project profiles can be found on our website.
Photo from project "Chikhwawa Water and Sanitation Project – Malawi". In this project, Six completed community shallow wells now provide water for 750 people in the following communities: MphangoWalimba, Mandele, Nyaulomba, Ndombo and Nyalugwe with 125 users per water point. In each of the communities, 55 household Eco-san latrines have been constructed, for a total of 330 latrines. On average each latrine serves five people, thus a total of 1650 beneficiaries for the 6 communities.
It is most often young girls and women who do the carrying of water. They sometimes get up hours before dawn and walk through dangerous areas, prey to elephants and unfriendly neighbors, carrying 20-liter jerry cans on their backs – weighing more than they do. Usually this water is not clean and people are continually sick with dysentery and more serious illnesses.
For the first time, people are able to wash their hands, their clothes and their bodies during the dry season (several months.) When you are walking five to ten kilometers a day carrying 20-30 liters of water, you cannot afford to use it for anything but the most necessary life sustaining tasks.
These kids are so happy to have clean drinking water in their village!
Blue Planet Network encourages the funding of water&sanitation projects that have 100% consensus&participation from the residents of a village.The reason this is crucial is both because changes will be necessary in personal hygiene practices to prevent fouling the ground water,& b/c everyone’s efforts will be required for the construction& maintenance of the new facilities.Each family contributes about $22, plus their labor.Families who cannot afford the monetary contribution provide extra…
With the support of Blue Planet Network, Watershed Organization Trust excavated a well and piped water to a central tap in the Thakarwadi Hamlet. They also improved the road to bring in cement and sand for construction. There is now sufficient water throughout most of the year. The project was completed in 2007. Having water in the hamlet has freed the women to look for work to augment household income, such as farm labor in nearby fields.
Nanusimg Jesu Jadhar, village headman, explained that the people decided to work with WOTR on land treatments to capture and harvest more rainwater that otherwise ran off the land. The goal is to recharge the underground water table and raise the level of groundwater so that more water is available for crops and livestock.
Petrona now has a faucet with running water next to her kitchen. This leaves Petrona with more time. She is able to make her children’s clothes and she is better able to tend her crops. She composts, and uses the grey water from her faucet to irrigate her garden. Last year, she fed her family almost entirely from her garden and did not have to buy any corn (Guatemala’s staple food). All of these things save her money.
Aqua para la Salud (an internationally funded not-for-profit organization) recently installed two lavamanos at Janlay’s school. Before the lavamanos were installed, the students had only four sinks for over 150 students. Group hygiene lessons on hand washing were not possible because there were not enough faucets. Now, the students wash their hands as a group several times each day: before school starts, before snack, and after snack.