The need for physical aid and spiritual transformation in Niger, West Africa is huge. Today, that need is compounded by fear and hopelessness as this nation suffers the loss of so many from disease, malnutrition and poverty…
Now, more than ever, there is a great need to get involved with our work to eliminate water scarcity. Now, more than ever, your involvement can transform lives and eliminate the preventable water related death and disease caused by the lack of accessible clean water.
- Only 46% have access to clean water
- 1 out of 4 children dies before age 5
- 85% of women cannot read or write because their day is spent securing water for their family.
Water, sanitation, and hygiene are essential for extended life expectancy of the people of Niger. Unsanitary environments and unsafe water threaten not only the immediate survival of young children but also their physical and mental development. Illnesses such as diarrhea cause and exacerbate malnutrition, and can result in long-term stunting of development.
In Niger, the women seldom are educated since their main job is securing water for their families. Unfortunately many of the wells are contaminated with waste and debris. Many women and children walk long distances and end up the day with only limited amounts of contaminated water. In rural Niger, there are not many ways to generate income. Meals consist of fish from local rivers, produce from small gardens, or crops from mostly barren fields. There is not enough water to sustain much life.
The pre-existing wells in Niger are called Open Wells. This means that the wells have no covering and there is no way to guarantee that the water in the wells is sanitary. Often times dirty ropes and buckets, as well as debris or animals falling in contaminate the wells. Theses wells are far from sanitary or ideal; however, women and children often walk long distances to obtain water from the wells because they simply have no other source. They wait in long lines and pray that water will still be available when their turn finally comes around. This job may be repeated more than once a day to provide water for their every need. In fact, many women have hardly any time for anything else. The children have to help their mothers with this enormous task, robbing them of the opportunity to become educated.
Sealed Afridev wells are more expensive, but last much longer and protect the people from contamination and disease. The average cost for one of these Afridev wells is $3000. Wells vary in price because of the topography of the land, distance traveled, road conditions, weather, and the like. Wells 4 Wellness works tirelessly to help provide these safe water sources for the people of Niger. Of the identified possible well locations, schools are our primary targets for well development. This will improve the likelihood that children will be able to have an education, since they will be able to bring water back to their homes. In the Sub-Sahara, wells are usually the only year-round water source.