Amina Ali Wardere, 43 is a mother of nine, and a resident of Dadajabulla village in Wajir county.
Wajir county is one of the ASAL counties in Kenya that has been classified as facing high levels of acute food insecurity (IPC Phase 3) as at September 2022.
Amina, like many other community members of Dadajabulla has experienced the immense impact of the prolonged drought that has severely eroded their livelihoods and left many in desperation. Access to clean water for household and animal use has been a great challenge especially for women and girls who have to walk close to ten kms daily to fetch water. This puts them at risk of attacks due to insecurity and also compromises their school time or income generating activities.
In spite of all this, Amina is able to afford a smile. The construction of community water points in her village has provided a ray of hope despite the dire drought situation in the area.
“Access to clean water was a difficult task especially to the village women as there was no separate water drawing point for households and animals. One water point would be used to serve households, donkey carts and also water buzas. Due to the congestion and long queues of both humans, donkey carts and water buza, I had to wake up early and spend most of my day fetching water” She says.
The construction of communal water points as well as the provision of household storage tanks from the partnership between Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA), Oxfam, ASAL Humanitarian Network and WASDA has eased life for Amina and many other community members. Access to clean, safe water and sanitation is a fundamental human right and a component of ensuring a dignified life especially for people affected by and made vulnerable by emergencies such as the current drought.
The interventions of this project aimed at improving access to water through the rehabilitation of water storage system, reticulation and solarization of boreholes in different parts of Wajir County. The use of solar instead of diesel generator to pump the water contributed to lowering the price of water access for the community members. In addition, this intervention also promoted good hygiene through awareness creation and encouraging simple habits such as handwashing.
“Accessing clean water was difficult task in the villages. There was no separate water drawing point for households, we were sharing with donkey carts. Sometimes there was over-congestion and crowding due to the long ques, taking much of my time. I had to wake up very early in the morning to get water to escape the long ques. With this intervention we now have separate communal water drawing point as well as storage tank for households, I can access water anytime, without worrying of the long ques and the long distance I covered previously. Says Amina.
‘’Access to water was also difficult due to shortage of genset diesel and water cost was expensive due to the diesel price, I was paying ksh10 per 20 liters of water, now I am paying ksh5 per 20 liters of water due to the installation of the solar system. We are grateful to both WASDA and OXFAM’’ she adds.
Amina and many other community members can now access water in a safe, cost effective and timely manner.
Story compiled by WASDA Team.
Story edited by ASAL Humanitarian Network (AHN
“Accessing clean water was difficult task in the villages. There was no separate water drawing point for households, we were sharing with donkey carts. Sometimes there was over-congestion and crowding due to the long ques, taking much of my time''”