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U.S. Government and Water For All: Making A Difference PDF Print E-mail

The United States Agency for International Development, the foreign aid arm of the U.S. government, is one of Water For All's largest donors.  This past year, Water For All has donated 110 USAID-funded water pumps, improving access to clean drinking water for more than 160,000 people in Malawi, Zambia and Kenya.  Here are but two stories of how Water For All's innovative water pumps are improving lives in Zambia and Malawi.

Zambia

The Chikumbuso Women and Orphans Project began in January 2005 with one widow and her seven children. Located just 15 kilometers outside of the Lusaka town center in the Ng'ombe township, today Chikumbuso creates opportunities and provides hope to more than 120 widows, mothers and grandmothers and three hundred children through education and microenterprise development.

Water For All installed a merry-go-round pump at the Chikumbuso school which benefits the children and woman who work on income generating projects at the centre. As staff Member Maureen Tembo said, "We are so grateful for our pump. The water is used in many, many ways. The children use if for drinking and it provides for our feeding programme. The tap is located right next to the area where the lunch is prepared which helps the women with both the cooking and the clean up. The water is used in our single mothers' food production project. The water is used in the soy milk, sour milk, tofu, and peanut butter production and the widows also use it to clean their hands during the day while they make their recycled bags."

Malawi

In the Central region of Malawi, merry-go-round pumps have been provided to the Chagogo and Mphangula Primary Schools, approximately two hours drive from Lilongwe.

At the Chagogo Primary School, which serves more than 1,000 students, the deputy headmaster Mr. Andrew Chikaonda said that before they received the pump, school children were drawing water from unprotected wells and that water borne diseases were rampant in the rainy season, leading to low school attendance. He also said that children used to endanger themselves by going away from the school to play by the road side at the trading centre. Mr. Chikaonda reports that the pump is simple to use and since its installation, children play closer to the school and attendance has increased.

Pitani John, a student at Chagogo, said, "We use the water in all sorts of ways, for drinking, watering our flower gardens, cleaning classrooms and washing our hands. Me and some of the older students have made our own hand washing stations for the school, which we all use now. During the rainy season, there was a stream close to the school where we used to get water, although it wasn't clean. In the dry season we had nothing. Now we have clean water all year round."

The Mphangula Primary School, which educates more than 1,200 students, is situated a half hour's drive from the Chagogo school.

Mr. Nguluwe, the headmaster for Mphangula Primary school, said, "Before we had the pump, many learners were not coming to school every day. Now they are. Because we now have a reliable water supply, we have not only seen a drop in absenteeism, we have seen a big increase in enrollment. Last year, we had 840 learners, while this year we have 1,226. However, the pump is coping with the increased demand. At the school, we use the water for drinking, hand washing and watering our gardens. We also make the pump available to the local community, which primarily uses the water for drinking and washing clothes. "

And of course children love spinning on the merry-go-round. Twelve-year old Elinati Brino said, "I love the pump and I play on it every day. Because we have water, the girls have been able to plant flowers all over our school. I am very proud that we are the only school in the area that has flowers like these."