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Water for Tanzania: Lifewater Expands to 3rd Country in East Africa

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. (March 12, 2019)—Lifewater International will expand programs to Tanzania in the year 2020 for the purpose of providing safe water sources for families living in extreme poverty.

An East African country, Tanzania borders Uganda and has an estimated 24 million people living in rural areas without access to safe water or basic sanitation. Data from 2016 shows that 26% of people are living on less than $2 a day—that’s more than a quarter of the country’s population. [1]

 

Beginning in 2020, Lifewater is scheduled to have a fully operational field office in the Shinyanga District of Tanzania.

Local staff equipped with vehicles to travel to remote villages and mobile phones to record real-time data will execute Lifewater’s Vision of a Healthy Village approach to ending the global water and sanitation crisis.

In November, Lifewater President/CEO Justin Narducci visited villages in the Shinyanga district while scouting for program areas.

“I felt affirmed that this is ‘the place’ and very heartbroken at the same time; water is scarce and communities are eager to work together,” he said.

water for tanzania
A young Tanzanian woman gathers water from a swamp in Shinyanga.

Research supported by the United Nations Development Programme found the “share of rural households with access to safe and clean water has only changed from 45% in 2004/05 to barely 57% in 2012.” [2] Additionally, in rural Tanzania, “86% of households do not have places for hand-washing with soap and water.” [3]

As a result, disease is rampant in water-poor districts. According to 2016 research, “Over 18,500 children less than five years old die annually due to diarrhea resulting from contaminated water and hygiene practices.” [4]

In the Shinyanga district of Tanzania, a rural, water-poor corner of the world, research conducted by Lifewater found that many people are drinking surface water or water contaminated with human and animal feces. Because sickness is common, primary education cannot be prioritized, and children frequently drop out of school. [5]

“We are starting the process in earnest, recruiting leadership, conducting formative research, and developing partnerships with local churches,” Narducci said. “I want to be sure we thank God for allowing us the opportunity to serve even more children; there is certainly much at stake.”

Expansion into Tanzania is part of Lifewater International’s 2020 Strategic Plan for programmatic enhancements that serve more people with a greater quality of service.

[1] The World Bank in Tanzania: Overview (The World Bank, updated 2018) https://bit.ly/2CKEzO2

[2] Flora Kessy and Richard Mahali Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene Services in Tanzania: Access, Policy Trends, and Financing (Dar es Salaam, Economic and Social Research Foundation, 2016) https://bit.ly/2TCwVPL

[3] Ibid.

[4]  Kamara,  Galukande, Maeda, Luboga, and Renzaho, Understanding the Challenges of Improving Sanitation and Hygiene Outcomes in a Community Based Intervention: A Cross-Sectional Study in Rural Tanzania (June 14, 2017) https://bit.ly/2TCwVPL

[5] Flora Kessy and Richard Mahali Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene Services in Tanzania: Access, Policy Trends, and Financing (Dar es Salaam, Economic and Social Research Foundation, 2016) https://bit.ly/2T8Nuh6 

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