Water for Girmawit Alema

The shortage of safe water has been a critical problem for the people living in the rural village of Kokeb Tsibah (Gradender), located in Wereda Gulo-Mekeda. In the absence of a better option, the community has been drinking water from an unprotected source for a long period of time.

After a community-led project to get a borehole drilled, the people living in the village are now able to get clean and safe water nearby thanks to Water.org and Water.org's partner, REST. The time the community used to spend searching for water has been reduced, providing them with time for engaging in different activities and to have some rest.

Girmawit Alema, age 15, lives in the village of Kokeb Tsibah (Gradender) and is one of the beneficiaries of the harbor shallow borehole. She shared:

“Before the intervention, we were suffering a lot in getting water for our daily consumption and other household uses. For example, I was forced to get up early in the morning each day and trek a long journey to the water source. I then had to queue and wait for more than 15 minutes to collect the water,” said Girmawit. “I usually collected only one jerry can (20L) per day because it was too far to fetch more than one. As a result, the amount of water I used to collect every day was very limited and was never enough for household use. I had to use it very economically and it was also unclean and unpleasant to see,” she added.

Girmawit Alema walks a shorter distance with safe water.

Now the problem of collecting water has passed. Young girls like Girmawit Alema are now able to easily obtain enough water each day for use. The water is near their home and there is no more need to walk at night or early in the morning to look for it. This enables Girmawit and community residents to increase their consumption of water. The availability of clean and safe water in the village has allowed the community to use it for personal and environmental sanitation as well.

Capital city: Addis Ababa
Population of 96.6 million
49 million lack safe water
76 million have no sanitation services
Infant mortality rate of 5.5%
40% live in poverty

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