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Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Solar water schemes set up in Katete

Rural News Solar water schemes set up in Katete

Innovation Africa Country Manager Pauline Phiri says her organisation has set up 11 solar water schemes worth US$660, 000 in Katete Town, of Eastern Province.

Ms Phiri reveals that each of the established water schemes estimated between US$50,000 and US$60,000, are now providing clean and safe piped water to villages in the area.

ZANIS reports that Ms Phiri said in an interview explained that her institution set up the water schemes in Katete to address challenges faced in accessing the essential commodity to ensure increased productive activities that would improve their livelihoods.

“The solar water schemes were mainly targeting to fight diarrhea diseases among children by providing clean and safe water, while for the mothers it was meant to reduce the amount of time they spent fetching water so that they can have ample time to venture into productive activities,” she said.

Ms Phiri also highlighted that Innovation Africa has also undertaken five solar lighting projects at two schools and three health facilities, with each project costing around US$10,000 and US$ 15,000.

She said the reason for providing solar lighting to schools and health facilities was because they had observed the various challenges that the two sectors were facing.

“Our vision is to help communities. We have health facilities with maternity wings but have no lighting, so women are forced to use candles, so we want them to have better lighting while giving life,’ she said.

The Innovation Africa country Manager said schools were also targeted as part of the organisation’s vision to help pupils study using clean energy lighting.

As for schools our vision is to help contribute towards better education services by providing lighting to enable learners to study at night as without this most of them would use candles or kerosene lamps for lighting,” she said.

Innovation Africa has set up a total of 52 projects both in solar lighting and solar water schemes in the Eastern and Southern parts of the country.

Meanwhile, the provision of a solar water scheme in Robert Village in Katiula Ward of the district cheered Agness Phiri a resident of the village.

Ms Phiri said that before the arrival of Innovation Africa in her area, she used to walk a stretch of one hour to the nearest water source and another hour back.

“We used to walk one hour to the dambo were we used to draw water and more than one hour back. But now things have changed, it’s just minutes to the tap. The availability of clean and safe water has changed our lives,” she said.

A population of 500 people covering the two villages of Robert and Manzele are benefiting from the solar water scheme, with women saying the availability of water has improved personal hygiene in the villages.

And Katiula Ward Councilor Francis Banda said water has not only been made available to humans alone but also livestock have been catered for.

“We have 1,500 cows just in this village, and these have also been catered for by the provision of a water trough where livestock not just from this village but also from other areas can drink water from,” he said.

Mr Banda said another major benefit that his people have experienced is that of the reduction of distance to the nearest water point.

Meanwhile, Mwandafisi Health Post in Charge Arnold Halumba said the installation of the solar water scheme in Robert and Manzele, the two villages have seen a reduction in the number of diarrhoeal cases.

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