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Water for Life: International Water Aid Charity Just a Drop supports over half a million people in Africa with clean water and sanitationBy Just a Drop
To herald the start of INDABA, one of the largest tourism marketing events in the African calendar, Fiona Jeffery OBE - Industry Relations Director, African Travel and Tourism Association - highlights the achievements in Africa of the international water aid charity she established in 1998, Just a Drop.
Just a Drop was set up to support the millions of women and children in sub-Saharan Africa and beyond who carry out the back-breaking and all-consuming task of finding and fetching water for their families. Everyday, they spend hours trying to provide this basic life necessity – often walking up to 6km to find it. What’s more, many women are still expected to walk miles to collect water on the day they go into labour.
The water they collect is often contaminated. It can kill too. In fact, every twenty seconds, a child dies from a water related disease.
Just a Drop provides clean drinking water and sanitation facilities to some of the poorest communities around the world through the construction of wells, boreholes, pipelines, hand pumps, sand dams, rainwater harvesting systems and latrines, as well as hygiene and sanitation programmes.
Over 70% of the charity’s funding supports countries in Africa and to date, work has been carried out in Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Niger, Senegal, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe. To date, we have improved the lives of approximately 535,938 across the continent by providing clean water and sanitation to those most in need.
Today, Just a Drop’s work in Africa focuses on Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia. Last year alone, we completed 27 projects in these countries, reaching approximately 78,000 people.
Six of those projects were carried out in the semi-arid region of Makueni County, Kenya, south of Nairobi, helping communities to transform their environment by improving the availability of safe water supplies through building sand dams and rainwater harvesting tanks, as well as establishing tree nurseries and opportunities for planting crops.