Safe and available water is essential for individual and public health. The global community is experiencing a crisis in water quality and availability. Illness and deaths caused by contaminated water is at an all-time high, which is threatening the health and well-being of people across the globe. With the climate changing more rapidly, this epidemic is expected to exponentially increase. There is a great need for aid and assistance in developing communities to develop safe and reliable water sources.
Raven a student from Fort Lewis College with future aspirations of using his engineering education work with developing communities drove him to apply and participate in FSD-Jinja Uganda Virtual internship. He expected to learn how to effectively integrate into a community to determine what is needed most to navigate the process of sustainably implementing a system or program to benefit the community. Raven worked with our partner organization Kakira Out-growers Rural Development Fund (KORD) to implement a new water system for the community of Lubani Village. This included improving an existing unprotected open surface pond, establishing a water treatment method available to all residents, and developing a hand wash station to promote community hygiene.
The community defined needs for an improved water source and the concern of public health caused by contaminated water and poor community Hygiene. To address the community needs and concerns, Raven and KORD worked together to design a new water source, a treatment method, a testing procedure, and outlined new sanitation and hygiene measures. Along with improving systems in the community, a water user committee was formed to assist the community in developing management oversight that supports inclusion and communal responsibility and collaboration.
This project was successful at improving the water source for the community. It separated the use from the residents and the natural wildlife in the area which was contributing to contamination. Now, the community has a protected spring with a constant flow which provides clear water for residential use. The treatment system was put in place to further treat the water in case of any lasting contamination and testing kits are used to monitor the water quality to help in understanding when and what may be contaminating the water. The community now has been exposed to improved hygienic practices and it is believed that the Lubani community will see an increase of public health through adaption.
Project Participant: Raven T Sutton - Fort Lewis College
Partner Organization: Kakira Outgrowers Rural Development Fund (KORD)