By Nunurai Jena
Published: December 1, 2013
OVER 40 households in Sanyati’s Shonhiwa area now have access to safe drinking water after villagers contributed their chickens and goats to raise funds to build a protected well.
The villagers, who used to rely on largely contaminated Munyati River for water, initiated the project after experiencing several deaths due to water-borne diseases such as diarrhea.
They raised US$400 to pay people to dig the well and provided additional cash to buy materials such as cement, bricks and food.
Women in the area said the project has come as a relief to them as they used to walk over five kilometres to fetch water.
Gogo Sheila Muguwu said she lost her granddaughter to diarrhea early this year after she drank contaminated river water.
“I’m happy that we as a village have managed to dig our protected well against all odds,” she said.
Charity Shonhiwa (15) said they used to wake up as early as 5am to fetch water before going to school. “At least I am now relieved as waking up early to fetch water at the river was taking my study time,” she said.
The project started after the Civic Education Network Trust (Civnet), an organisation that empowers citizenry through promoting and providing participatory civic education, held a workshop in the area.
Village head Isaiah Shonhiwa said the project was a homegrown solution to the problems facing the community.