Butangala Somero Village
Water Project

Project Funded!

All donations to this water project were generously matched for

“The possibility of having a well now makes me hopeful.” - Madina, mother of 7

Village Water Project

Butangala Somero, Uganda, Africa

GPS: 0.4202, 33.518

420 people

Status: In Progress

  • Story
  • Updates 3
  • Plan
  • FAQ's

Life in Butangala Somero: Madina’s Story

Madina has to be strategic about how and when she goes to get water. The spring her family relies on is a dangerous 30-minute walk through thick sugarcane plantations, and the pond as almost as far.

She goes in the morning, between 7 and 10 a.m., when most everyone goes. There is safety in numbers.

Madina, her husband, and their seven children live in Butangala Somero village. They make four trips a day to the spring for water. At times, to save valuable work time, she and other members of the community draw water from a nearby pond.

“There is a specific time of the day that we fetch water for security reasons,” Madina said. “It’s also when most people fetch water, which leads to delays.”

The delays mean that Madina must wait for hours at the spring in the hot sun. It means less time to farm and care for her family.

“Having a well will make me feel safe,” Madina said. “It will also free time for me to do more productive work to contribute to my children’s welfare.”

Having a source of clean, safe water nearby also means that the children in Butangala Somero will be healthy enough to attend school. With more time to work, parents can save and invest in education for their children.

“I always tell the children that education is key to making their future better,” Madina said. “And for them to get educated, we the parents will have to do much more; that requires time to work.”

Madina has a cheerful, straightforward attitude that has allowed her to take the challenges of her life in stride. Now, she wants a peaceful life for her children. A life with safe water.

“Life can’t be normal when you constantly worry about whether you will have water at home,” she said. “Water is life.”

You can help Madina’s family and others in Butangala Somero village today. Your gift will provide health training for each household, plus a new, safe water source near their village.

Sponsor Butangala Somero village today.

July 10, 2019: Village Certified ODF

When each household builds and uses their own functioning restroom, a community earns an “Open Defecation Free” (ODF) certification. Each country has their own processes and celebration for ODF villages, and it’s a huge accomplishment towards improved health for everyone.

February 18, 2019: CLTS Complete

In Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS), each village goes through exercises that reveal how their current practices are making them sick, such as identifying all the places where feces are contaminating their environment. This important step equips communities to be knowledgeable about their health and willing to make changes.

February 2019: Project Ready

Butangala Somero is in a very remote region of Uganda

View Interactive Map

This village is on its way to becoming a Healthy Village. The process takes approximately 24 months from start to finish. You can follow along with the progress below.

Here’s the Plan for Butangala Somero:

Pro-Tip! If the timeline is blue, that means Butangala Somero has reached this milestone! If it's gray, they are working towards that step next.

ready

Project Ready

Villages are carefully selected by Lifewater staff and wait for program work to begin in their area.

CLTS

In Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS), each village goes through exercises that reveal how their current practices are making them sick, such as identifying all the places where feces are contaminating their environment. This important step equips communities to be knowledgeable about their health and willing to make changes.

clts
healthy-homes-registered

Healthy Homes Registered

A home is certified healthy when a family has adopted five healthy habits: washing hands with soap and water, storing and using water safely, building and using a bathroom with a roof and door, using a drying rack to keep dishes off the ground, and keeping the area around the home safe and clean.

ODF

When each household builds and uses their own functioning restroom, a community earns an “Open Defecation Free” (ODF) certification. Each country has their own processes and celebration for ODF villages, and it’s a huge accomplishment towards improved health for everyone.

odf
wc_schoolmc_formed

Water Committee Selected

Butangala Somero has selected water committee members to manage the safe village water source. Forming a water committee is a key step toward establishing a safe water source in a village. Committees are made up of local men and women who manage the well and collect fees, ensuring the community’s investment lasts for generations to come.

Construction Started

Work is officially underway to build a new water source for Butangala Somero village. Our local teams are using technology appropriate to the region and geography to ensure the new water source is sustainable.

construction_start
construction_complete

Village Has Safe Water Source

The new safe water source is now complete!

Clean, safe water transforms a village. Everyone gathers to celebrate, thanking God for the miracle in their community. 

Healthy Village

Great news! Butangala Somero is now a certified Healthy Village. That means the safe water source is complete and more than 90% of the community’s homes are healthy. That is a new future for 420 children and families.

healthy_village_achieved

Village Water Project FAQs

What is included in the cost of a water project?

When you sponsor a village water project, you are helping bring lasting change. Your gift provides:

  • House-to-house hygiene and sanitation education
  • Custom engineered water source
  • Construction of a safe water source
  • Community engagement by Lifewater field staff to ensure change lasts
  • Monitoring and evaluation of the project with real-time updates to donors
  • Local church partnerships that equip the church to be the hands and feet of Jesus
  • Five-year water source maintenance and sustainability (funded by beneficiary communities on a volunteer basis)
Is this a real village? Am I impacting this actual village?

Yes! The village you are helping is a real village. All families photographed or shared from the project page have given their permission to have their information shared with you.

Can I visit programs and/or my sponsored water project?

Lifewater has local staff that live and serve among the communities and schools where Lifewater works. Our staff know the language and the culture and are best equipped to serve communities. Because we seek to ensure sustainable water projects and community buy in, we do not allow donors to visit the projects they sponsor. However, we do commit to sending real-time updates, photos, and stories from the projects themselves.

Where does Lifewater work?

With more than 40 years’ experience, LIfewater is the longest-running Christian clean water charity in North America. Over those 40 years, Lifewater has worked in more than 45 different countries. Currently, our work is focused in Sub-Saharan Africa (Ethiopia, Uganda, and Tanzania) and Southeast Asia (Cambodia).

Why these countries and regions?

Lifewater identifies countries and regions that are unreached and underserved with basic water access and sanitation, which means we focus on areas where other organizations are not serving. 

Although great strides have been made in the past 20 years to solve the global water crisis, remote and rural populations still remain unreached with adequate water and sanitation. These distant regions are difficult and often costly for governments and NGOs to serve well. Many of these communities feel as though they have been forgotten.

Can I request a water project in a specific country?

Currently, Lifewater has programs in Ethiopia, Uganda, Tanzania, and Cambodia. You can go to lifewater.org/projects to select a specific water project to help. Because our programs are regionalized and made in partnership with the local governments, we are not able to take requests for specific water projects outside of our existing programs.

What percent of funds go towards programs?

Lifewater budgets 80% of expenditures for programs. The remaining 20% is split between administrative/management and fundraising expenses. This ratio is best in class for nonprofits and is why Lifewater has received the highest rating from Charity Navigator.

Administrative/management expenses are used to ensure that we are effective in managing the funds entrusted to us and include the following types of expenses: accounting personnel, leadership time, professional development of staff, external auditors, legal counsel, government registration expenses in every U.S. state, credit card fees for processing donations, bank fees, database maintenance, and office expenses.

Fundraising expenses generate the income needed to do the work that we set out to do. These include the cost of direct mail appeals and communication, marketing projects, donor relations personnel, and email communication systems. Last year, every dollar invested into Lifewater fundraising efforts resulted in $10 of donation for the organization. 

Is Lifewater approved/vetted by 3rd party organizations?

Over our 40 year history, Lifewater has received the highest accreditations from the most respected rating organization in the industry. Lifewater is recognized as one of the top-rated charities in the United States by independent reporting organizations, including:

  • Charity Navigator (four stars)
  • Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA)
  • Guidestar (Platinum)
  • Great Nonprofits (five star)
  • Excellence in Giving

Learn more at https://lifewater.org/top-rated-charity.

How does Lifewater integrate faith into its work?

Lifewater’s work is founded on the belief that every person is made in the image of God. It is with this conviction that we seek out the globe’s most unreached, marginalized people groups in need of safe water. 

Both nationally and internationally, 100 percent of our staff are Christians. These Christian staff help facilitate Lifewater’s Healthy Church strategy in communities. And, where there are no churches, we work with church planting partners to start new churches. 

To create Healthy Churches, Lifewater first trains church leaders in foundational theology. These leaders are equipped with the basic story of the Christian faith and the biblical mandate to love others. Leaders learn that stopping the spread of disease and caring for the vulnerable aligns with our responsibility as Christians to love our neighbor. 

Second, Lifewater ensures churches have safe bathrooms on their premises, handwashing stations, clean water nearby, and the education to promote health within their congregations. It’s imperative that churches are early adopters of healthy hygiene practices. 

Third, Lifewater encourages churches to help vulnerable households become Healthy Homes. Church leaders undergo a training to become WASH (water access, sanitation, and hygiene) advocates in their communities. These advocates are encouraged to identify widows, child-headed households, the elderly, and the disabled to help them meet the health standards of Lifewater’s programs.

What is Lifewater’s process? What does the organization do, and how does it do it?

Lifewater’s Vision of a Healthy Village strategy is a relationship-first method. This model transforms entire regions house by house, village by village, and school by school. It is among the most intensive household-level work happening in the entire developing world and is closely tracked for progress, sustainability, and overall impact.

We construct custom-engineered safe water sources and teach life-saving health and sanitation practices in local villages and schools in need.

Story

Life in Butangala Somero: Madina’s Story

Madina has to be strategic about how and when she goes to get water. The spring her family relies on is a dangerous 30-minute walk through thick sugarcane plantations, and the pond as almost as far.

She goes in the morning, between 7 and 10 a.m., when most everyone goes. There is safety in numbers.

Madina, her husband, and their seven children live in Butangala Somero village. They make four trips a day to the spring for water. At times, to save valuable work time, she and other members of the community draw water from a nearby pond.

“There is a specific time of the day that we fetch water for security reasons,” Madina said. “It’s also when most people fetch water, which leads to delays.”

The delays mean that Madina must wait for hours at the spring in the hot sun. It means less time to farm and care for her family.

“Having a well will make me feel safe,” Madina said. “It will also free time for me to do more productive work to contribute to my children’s welfare.”

Having a source of clean, safe water nearby also means that the children in Butangala Somero will be healthy enough to attend school. With more time to work, parents can save and invest in education for their children.

“I always tell the children that education is key to making their future better,” Madina said. “And for them to get educated, we the parents will have to do much more; that requires time to work.”

Madina has a cheerful, straightforward attitude that has allowed her to take the challenges of her life in stride. Now, she wants a peaceful life for her children. A life with safe water.

“Life can’t be normal when you constantly worry about whether you will have water at home,” she said. “Water is life.”

You can help Madina’s family and others in Butangala Somero village today. Your gift will provide health training for each household, plus a new, safe water source near their village.

Sponsor Butangala Somero village today.

Updates

July 10, 2019: Village Certified ODF

When each household builds and uses their own functioning restroom, a community earns an “Open Defecation Free” (ODF) certification. Each country has their own processes and celebration for ODF villages, and it’s a huge accomplishment towards improved health for everyone.

February 18, 2019: CLTS Complete

In Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS), each village goes through exercises that reveal how their current practices are making them sick, such as identifying all the places where feces are contaminating their environment. This important step equips communities to be knowledgeable about their health and willing to make changes.

February 2019: Project Ready

Plan

Butangala Somero is in a very remote region of Uganda

View Interactive Map

This village is on its way to becoming a Healthy Village. The process takes approximately 24 months from start to finish. You can follow along with the progress below.

Here’s the Plan for Butangala Somero:

Pro-Tip! If the timeline is blue, that means Butangala Somero has reached this milestone! If it's gray, they are working towards that step next.

ready

Project Ready

Villages are carefully selected by Lifewater staff and wait for program work to begin in their area.

CLTS

In Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS), each village goes through exercises that reveal how their current practices are making them sick, such as identifying all the places where feces are contaminating their environment. This important step equips communities to be knowledgeable about their health and willing to make changes.

clts
healthy-homes-registered

Healthy Homes Registered

A home is certified healthy when a family has adopted five healthy habits: washing hands with soap and water, storing and using water safely, building and using a bathroom with a roof and door, using a drying rack to keep dishes off the ground, and keeping the area around the home safe and clean.

ODF

When each household builds and uses their own functioning restroom, a community earns an “Open Defecation Free” (ODF) certification. Each country has their own processes and celebration for ODF villages, and it’s a huge accomplishment towards improved health for everyone.

odf
wc_schoolmc_formed

Water Committee Selected

Butangala Somero has selected water committee members to manage the safe village water source. Forming a water committee is a key step toward establishing a safe water source in a village. Committees are made up of local men and women who manage the well and collect fees, ensuring the community’s investment lasts for generations to come.

Construction Started

Work is officially underway to build a new water source for Butangala Somero village. Our local teams are using technology appropriate to the region and geography to ensure the new water source is sustainable.

construction_start
construction_complete

Village Has Safe Water Source

The new safe water source is now complete!

Clean, safe water transforms a village. Everyone gathers to celebrate, thanking God for the miracle in their community. 

Healthy Village

Great news! Butangala Somero is now a certified Healthy Village. That means the safe water source is complete and more than 90% of the community’s homes are healthy. That is a new future for 420 children and families.

healthy_village_achieved

FAQ's

Village Water Project FAQs

What is included in the cost of a water project?

When you sponsor a village water project, you are helping bring lasting change. Your gift provides:

  • House-to-house hygiene and sanitation education
  • Custom engineered water source
  • Construction of a safe water source
  • Community engagement by Lifewater field staff to ensure change lasts
  • Monitoring and evaluation of the project with real-time updates to donors
  • Local church partnerships that equip the church to be the hands and feet of Jesus
  • Five-year water source maintenance and sustainability (funded by beneficiary communities on a volunteer basis)
Is this a real village? Am I impacting this actual village?

Yes! The village you are helping is a real village. All families photographed or shared from the project page have given their permission to have their information shared with you.

Can I visit programs and/or my sponsored water project?

Lifewater has local staff that live and serve among the communities and schools where Lifewater works. Our staff know the language and the culture and are best equipped to serve communities. Because we seek to ensure sustainable water projects and community buy in, we do not allow donors to visit the projects they sponsor. However, we do commit to sending real-time updates, photos, and stories from the projects themselves.

Where does Lifewater work?

With more than 40 years’ experience, LIfewater is the longest-running Christian clean water charity in North America. Over those 40 years, Lifewater has worked in more than 45 different countries. Currently, our work is focused in Sub-Saharan Africa (Ethiopia, Uganda, and Tanzania) and Southeast Asia (Cambodia).

Why these countries and regions?

Lifewater identifies countries and regions that are unreached and underserved with basic water access and sanitation, which means we focus on areas where other organizations are not serving. 

Although great strides have been made in the past 20 years to solve the global water crisis, remote and rural populations still remain unreached with adequate water and sanitation. These distant regions are difficult and often costly for governments and NGOs to serve well. Many of these communities feel as though they have been forgotten.

Can I request a water project in a specific country?

Currently, Lifewater has programs in Ethiopia, Uganda, Tanzania, and Cambodia. You can go to lifewater.org/projects to select a specific water project to help. Because our programs are regionalized and made in partnership with the local governments, we are not able to take requests for specific water projects outside of our existing programs.

What percent of funds go towards programs?

Lifewater budgets 80% of expenditures for programs. The remaining 20% is split between administrative/management and fundraising expenses. This ratio is best in class for nonprofits and is why Lifewater has received the highest rating from Charity Navigator.

Administrative/management expenses are used to ensure that we are effective in managing the funds entrusted to us and include the following types of expenses: accounting personnel, leadership time, professional development of staff, external auditors, legal counsel, government registration expenses in every U.S. state, credit card fees for processing donations, bank fees, database maintenance, and office expenses.

Fundraising expenses generate the income needed to do the work that we set out to do. These include the cost of direct mail appeals and communication, marketing projects, donor relations personnel, and email communication systems. Last year, every dollar invested into Lifewater fundraising efforts resulted in $10 of donation for the organization. 

Is Lifewater approved/vetted by 3rd party organizations?

Over our 40 year history, Lifewater has received the highest accreditations from the most respected rating organization in the industry. Lifewater is recognized as one of the top-rated charities in the United States by independent reporting organizations, including:

  • Charity Navigator (four stars)
  • Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA)
  • Guidestar (Platinum)
  • Great Nonprofits (five star)
  • Excellence in Giving

Learn more at https://lifewater.org/top-rated-charity.

How does Lifewater integrate faith into its work?

Lifewater’s work is founded on the belief that every person is made in the image of God. It is with this conviction that we seek out the globe’s most unreached, marginalized people groups in need of safe water. 

Both nationally and internationally, 100 percent of our staff are Christians. These Christian staff help facilitate Lifewater’s Healthy Church strategy in communities. And, where there are no churches, we work with church planting partners to start new churches. 

To create Healthy Churches, Lifewater first trains church leaders in foundational theology. These leaders are equipped with the basic story of the Christian faith and the biblical mandate to love others. Leaders learn that stopping the spread of disease and caring for the vulnerable aligns with our responsibility as Christians to love our neighbor. 

Second, Lifewater ensures churches have safe bathrooms on their premises, handwashing stations, clean water nearby, and the education to promote health within their congregations. It’s imperative that churches are early adopters of healthy hygiene practices. 

Third, Lifewater encourages churches to help vulnerable households become Healthy Homes. Church leaders undergo a training to become WASH (water access, sanitation, and hygiene) advocates in their communities. These advocates are encouraged to identify widows, child-headed households, the elderly, and the disabled to help them meet the health standards of Lifewater’s programs.

What is Lifewater’s process? What does the organization do, and how does it do it?

Lifewater’s Vision of a Healthy Village strategy is a relationship-first method. This model transforms entire regions house by house, village by village, and school by school. It is among the most intensive household-level work happening in the entire developing world and is closely tracked for progress, sustainability, and overall impact.

We construct custom-engineered safe water sources and teach life-saving health and sanitation practices in local villages and schools in need.