Before the arrival of the Oxfam-constructed borehole, residents of Piri village in South Sudan used to get their water from the river. Not only did it take hours to trudge there and back, but the water families had to use was far from clean. People frequently got sick with diarrhoea and malaria, especially younger children.
But Oxfam did more than just build a borehole. We helped to train people in how to maintain it and promote better hygiene. Silvia Lawrence is a volunteer water caretaker: "I check that the borehole is clean and report to repair it if there is a problem. There are two water caretakers and we discuss with the community the need to protect water sources."
"Women have suffered a lot in this village carrying water for a long, long way. Oxfam said it would drill a borehole if we cared for it. That's why I decided to volunteer. We really needed this waterpoint."
It's a sentiment echoed by Olivia Awaya, a hygiene promoter: "Before, when we got water from the river; we suffered a lot. The river was far and water brought lots of disease. Now, it's easier to get water and it's clean. Only Oxfam came to help, and now, many fewer people are getting sick."