Safe Drinking Water Scheme in district Rajanpur, Punjab
In partnership with the Youth Development Organization (YDO), ADP has launched a safe drinking water supply scheme to be implemented in Union Council Wang and Kot Mithan in District Rajanpur, Punjab. These Union Councils are some of the least developed parts of the District and were severely affected by the floods of 2010. The project is designed to provide clean drinking water to a target population of small-scale farmers who own 5-10 acres of land each. As part of the project, YDO will install 23 traditional shallow hand pumps to provide clean drinking water to the villagers. Additionally, a nominal sum of Rs.5 per household per month will be collected as user fees to ensure sufficient funds for any maintenance required in the future.
One of the reasons why ADP decided to fund this project was the problem of access to a water source for the villagers as well as contamination of the current source of water. The only sources of water available to the villagers are open ponds located at an average distance of 4 km from the villages. These open ponds are contaminated and unfit for human consumption. Animals also drink water from the same ponds and cause further contamination of the water. The water is untreated, spreading illnesses and water-borne diseases are adversely affecting the overall health of the community.
The proposed Clean Water Supply project in Rajanpur will be effective for several reasons. The installation of traditional low-lying hand pumps enables access to clean water for home use as well as irrigating small-scale crops and improving livelihoods. Additionally, the participatory approach being encouraged in this project engages the community and promotes sustainability through the formation of the Hand Pumps Committee whose members will be locals who will be responsible for maintenance of the pumps as well as collection of user fees.
Youth Development Organization (YDO) was established and registered in 2003 under the voluntary Social Welfare Agencies (Registration and Control) Ordinance, 1961. In its early days, YDO was involved in charity oriented activities, and then progressed towards implementing grassroots development initiatives. YDO has previously been supported by Oxfam and Aurat Foundation for different projects and operates out of Abbottabad.
- Increased access to clean drinking water for the community
- Decrease in incidence of water borne diseases and mortality
- Lab test results for water samples drawn from project sites after implementation
The hand pumps are being installed in a region that is extremely impoverished with little to no access to clean drinking water. The community depends on open sources of water that are highly contaminated and are located 4 km away from the village making them difficult to access. The hand pumps will enable the villagers to easily access clean water which will in turn improve their health, and ultimately their standard of living. The proposal satisfies all of ADP’s criteria. Most importantly, it addresses a critical need of providing clean drinking water to a community resulting not only in improved health but also in increased time for women and children to be involved in other more productive activities.
Q. How are locals currently meeting their need for drinking water?
The main sources of drinking water for the community are the open wells at 8 mosques around the village. The community members have a set schedule to collect water from the wells, where the female members from each household collect water every day after Isha prayers. One or two of the more well off households have personal boreholes and submersible electric motors for their personal use only. An old tube well also exists in the village that supplies an inadequate amount of water (discharge rate of less than 1 liter per minute). The tube well is operational only a few times per week due to inconsistent supply of electricity in the village.
The other sources of water are the open ponds located at a distance of 4 km from the villages.
Q. What measures are in place to ensure fair and equitable distribution of water among beneficiaries?
The Community Organization represented by the entire village will serve as the caretaker of the provided facilities. To ensure equal distribution of water throughout the community, the following measures will be set in place:
- A caretaker will be identified by the community organization for regular maintenance of the hand pumps.
- Issues relating to the supplied facilities will be discussed and solved during regular meetings of the community organization
- The facilities will be installed on sites that are equally accessible to all community members
Q. How will ADP ensure that water coming out of the pumps installed by YDO is fit for human consumption?
ADP will initially fund the installation of 5 hand pumps. Samples of water from each hand pump will be taken to a competent water testing organization in the area and water quality tests will be conducted on each sample to ensure that it is free from bacteria and safe for drinking purposes. If the testing organization declares the water fit for human consumption, the remaining 18 hand pumps will be installed throughout the community.
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