2019 sees us targeting several water projects in Zambia - an area known for Chlorea and a high
mortality rate due to Cholera.
The first Zambia project has been confirmed and we will be working with the community on the Eastern side of Lukanga Swamp 60km west of Kabwe. In the next couple of weeks will be the first time we are able to get the trucks in there after the monsoon.
The swamp has provided residents in this area fishing as an income and food resource (plus water supply). The area has a history of cholera outbreaks and in 2018 a national fish ban was put in place to help reduce the spread. The government at the time found that cholera was present in all open water sources.
Lukanga Swamp where the main source of food for many years has been fishing
Unfortunately, Cholera has contaminated the water in the area
Cholera is basically an infection caused by sewage. The issue in most of Zambia is that people have wells dug to say 100ft. In a nearby space, they will have latrines dug to the same depth. Both reaching the same underground water table, which also feeds the swampland or lakes (or other open water sources). This is one of the reasons why we do not dig wells. We install bores that go up to 200-250 ft below ground with the first 100-150 ft of the pipe encased in steel. This reduces the possibility of cholera-infected water entering the water source. In addition, we ensure that we dig the bores at least 350ft away from any latrines.
So the need is simple. Clean drinking water is our primary objective. Secondary to that is the need to diversify the resident's survival beyond fishing is crucial.
The sinking of the borehole - to provide clean drinking water with hand mono pump - to provide clean drinking water to ALL of the community.
Our secondary target is the inclusion of solar powered irrigation pump and storage water tanks.
And thirdly, tertiary established irrigated farming plots for the school (which is currently being built by another organization).
Our vision for this project is:
- Clean water
- Farming as an alternative income
- Vegetables and improved diets
Due to the government ban on fishing (the area's main income) plus the fact that the fish stocks are dwindling, the people in this area need another source of income. Many of the men have left and gone to the cities, leaving women and children behind (to basically defend for themselves). The crop irrigation for crops such as cabbages, onions, tomatoes and kale and will be a part of the education program that we will be involved in.
In addition, we hope to negotiate with the borehole company to clean out other existing boreholes in the region that will help neighboring villages to increase the impact in the region.
Here are some initial images of the area to also showing the current well the villagers are using to draw water from.
Typical housing in the village. No electricity, running water or sanitation. Most houses are one room huts.
The current well in the area where people travel for miles with plastic buckets. Notice the branches which cover the well to protect against the elements and animals.