Our implementing partner reports from the field...
"When the team arrived, community members were using a river located three kilometers away from the community to meet all of their water needs and because of this, residents were suffering from malaria. During the team’s stay, community members assisted the team with the water project whenever possible. The majority of community members sustain a living by farming and selling excess produce at local markets, though many are forced to keep all of their produce to feed their families. The nearest school is located .5 of a kilometer away from the community whose students, teachers and administrative personnel all have access to the new, safe water source. Before leaving the community, the team provided a LWI Rwanda contact number with community member, John Kajeguhakwa, in case their well were to fall into disrepair, become subject to vandalism or theft.
The LWI Rwanda team shared an introductory hygiene lesson with community members gathered at the well site. During the hygiene education, the team addressed; Disease transmission, germs, hand washing, proper water saving techniques, healthy and unhealthy communities, diarrhea doll, causes of diarrhea, keeping the water clean, tippy tap and simple hand washing, community mapping, good and bad hygiene behaviors, clean hands and clean hearts and dental hygiene.
The team had an opportunity to meet with sixty-five year old community member and farmer, Anastaz Seromba, who stated, "We used to have to travel at least 3 kilometers in any direction to find water and now it is right here in our village. We are so thankful."
Nearly 20 years ago, we set out to help the church in North America be the hands and feet of Jesus by serving the poorest of the poor. 600 million people in the world live on less than $2 a day. 884 million people lack access to safe drinking water.
For all practical purposes, these statistics refer to the same people; around the world, communities are trapped in debilitating poverty because they constantly suffer from water-related diseases and parasites, and/or because they spend long stretches of their time carrying water over long distances.
In response to this need, we implement participatory, community-based water solutions in developing countries. Since we started, we’ve completed water projects for 7,000 communities in 26 countries.
It all began in 1990, when a group from Houston, Texas traveled to Kenya and saw the desperate need for clean drinking water. They returned to Houston and founded a 501(c)3 non-profit. The fledgling organization equipped and trained a team of Kenyan drillers, and LWI Kenya began operations the next year under the direction of a national board.
That pattern continues today; we train, consult, and equip local people to implement solutions in their own countries.
Remembering the life-changing nature of that first trip in 1990, we also lead hundreds of volunteers on mission trips each year, working with local communities, under the leadership of nationals, to implement water projects. It’s hard to know which lives are changed more—those “serving” or those “being served.”
Our training programs in shallow well drilling, pump repair, and hygiene education have equipped thousands of volunteers and professionals in the basics of integrated water solutions since 1997.
Living Water International exists to demonstrate the love of God by helping communities acquire desperately needed clean water.
The Water Project is partnering with Living Water International to provide wells in Rwanda that bring clean, safe drinking water to thousands. And we're committing to making sure that these projects last for a long time by thinking through sustainability first. From the beginning, we'll have a plan in place to monitor and evaluate each well over time. We'll train communities in basic repair and maintenance, and we'll be available to help if things break down.
LWI will work with each community to ensure there is local ownership. We'll also fund sanitation and hygiene training so that better health practices will multiply the good of a new clean source of water. And then we'll keep going back...to make sure things continue working long into the future.
A new well for a community in Rwanda
Project Type: Hand Pumped Well
Location: Kayonza, Gahini, Rugarama, Rwanda