URCSF – Rakai – Uganda
It is raining now, but when it stops you would never be able to tell rain came down at all. The land is so dry, it soaks up any would be puddles in minutes, leaving no traces of rainfall. There are “ponds” here and there if you venture through the miles of trees. They are not like the ponds you see in our parks. These ponds are small holes in the ground filled with water. There is no clearness or remote color of blue to them, no fish. These ponds have an opaque greenish white or brown color. This is where the people do their laundry, bathe sometimes, and where they fetch their water to cook and drink from.
This water is contaminated and not safe to drink. It is the water they have to work with though. The only safe water in the area is water that is still under ground, protected in springs. The answer is simple enough: build wells to allow the water to come up for use and have the source water remain protected underground. Of course wells require a great deal of other resources, construction workers to dig and build, engineers to make it work, a team of committed and trained people to keep up the project, and funds for the materials and labor.
Peter and his group URCSF have started the 100 Wells project to bring water to over two million people in the local communities. They are on the second campaign and have completed their second well, put into use for the communities while I was there.
What makes this project different than others is it involves the community from the ground up. Committees are formed, training sessions are held, all before the town is able to use the well. This ensures everyone is invested in the ongoing upkeep of this well. As long as nothing breaks, the water should not run dry.
Only 98 more to go….
End of Uganda high and lows:
Favorite Thing: Harvesting the honey
Biggest Regret: Missing out on getting a photo at the Equator
What I learned: It is very easy to buy medicine in Africa What I taught: How to keep a well functioning