Water for Africa (WFA) was started by an Australian couple who after witnessing the sanitation and water issues in Tanzania, decided to build a water well for the community.
To make the project successful, the couple, Phil and Julie Hepworth, partnered with those who have the expertise in water boring. The first water well was built in Mtwango village in Mufindi district, providing clean water supply for nearly 2,000 people.
The process of building a water well is quite complex. Before they can begin the bore, the experts will check if the soil is suitable for boring. Once they have identified the right spot, the water technicians will insert about 20 pipes inside the soil and pump the water out using a hand pump within 10 to 15 minutes. The WFA team then tests the water to ensure it is safe to be consumed.
After the success of the first project in 2015, the couple went back to Australia and began to raise funds to build more wells in rural Tanzania. Each well costs about USD 5,000 and provides water to 3,000 villagers.
By the year 2020 WFA had helped build a total of 45 wells which provides water to close to two million people in Tanzania.
They soon realised that building the wells alone was not sufficient as there were also expenses related to well maintenance and repair works.
This is where RYTHM Foundation stepped in.
Instead of making it a one-off sponsorship, RYTHM Foundation decided to support WFA’s Footprint project. Under this, WFA identified 50 acres of land and worked with the local community to train them in farming avocado and macadamia nuts. Profits from the harvest of this plantation will be channeled to the building, maintenance and repair of the water wells.
RYTHM Foundation programme manager K. James Raj said the idea of the plantation is to help sustain the building and the maintenance of the water wells without assistance from anyone else.
“When I visited one of the villages, Kaning Ombe in Iringa, I saw how the process of drawing water out is done. The water wells provide water to about 6,000 people in the village. Once water starts coming out, the community danced and held some sort of celebration, to thank God.
“With support from RYTHM Foundation, WFA is now able to automate the water indication and fixed solar power to be more sustainable,” he said.
“With all this in place, it creates a sustainable project so that when RF or WFA exit from this project, the local people will be able to take ownership and may no longer need funds from foreigners to build water wells.
“Before this, the women and children in the area had to walk for 11 kilometres to get their water supply, which most of the time is contaminated.”
“The people had to share the same water source with wild animals. They bring home the water and even though they cook it, they still contracted diseases. They have no choice but to keep going back to the same river because that is their only source of water.”
“There was also no safety assurance for the girls every time they went to get water, as they leave early in the morning and only return in the afternoon. They could be attacked by wild animals or even raped along the journey. With clean water available in their village, we can help to prevent all that,” he said.
RYTHM Foundation is proud to be part of this sustainable project which provides clean and safe water to the rural communities in Tanzania.