This gift in action
In recent years, people in the Western province of Zambia have been officially ‘well trained’ in more ways than one. Oxfam Unwrapped trained 82 local people in basic construction techniques, pump mending, maintenance and well building – a ‘hole’ new experience for everyone concerned.
The project aims to guarantee access to safe water for at least 46,200 people in 60 communities of Kaoma and Mongu districts. Clean fresh water underpins the health, welfare and livelihoods of the villagers and the scheduled work to improve basic sanitation – and additional hygiene promotion work – is due to finish by the end of 2010.
The project really brought the community together; in Nyambi ward, for example, villagers collected water for brick moulding, carrying it on their heads or using ox-drawn carts. Hygiene promoters worked hard to ensure community-wide participation, which would underpin the success of the project and improve the health and lives of villagers.
The project has even had some unexpected successes – for example, women in the village who learned bricklaying as part of the well construction project are now putting them to good use building school latrines for a living; so ‘places to go’ are helping them go places…