Tanzanian wells provide more than just drinking water
In Mkwajuni, a village where Global Aid Network (GAiN) just recently drilled a well, Jeremiah, an enthusiastic pastor, showed Dennis Fierbach, GAiN’s Water for Life Director, and Eric Britton, GAiN’s Project Manager, the lush garden he had planted.
By using the excess water from the well, Jeremiah built a garden to help support his family and community. As a result, he has been able to grow rows upon rows of healthy vegetables, even in the dry season. “We were in a desert before this well,” Jeremiah expresses. “We had no water source in this village nor in the village that was closest to us. Instead we had to walk to ditches to retrieve some sort of water.”
Beside the garden was a barn that the pastor had also built, which housed 1100 chickens. From the sale of the eggs, Jeremiah was able to support his family and the members of his church. With the remaining proceeds, he also helped support a new church he had planted in a village ten kilometers away where GAiN had drilled a water well. “This has only been possible because GAiN drilled a well here in Mkwajuni,” says Jeremiah.
“We were encouraged to see the pastor’s vision, innovation and motivation to build back into his community,” states Eric.
The government had even recognized Jeremiah’s hard work. To express their appreciation, they gave him a plaque that now hangs on his barn and talks about his contribution to Mkwajuni and the surrounding communities.
GAiN’s impact has gone beyond providing clean water. It is also helping local people be effective, resourceful and successful among other leaders within their own communities and their own country.
As Dennis and Eric continued on their trip in Tanzania, they noticed a trend that was occurring among the leaders. Jeremiah’s agricultural project was not the only one in the Linde region.
At Mtama Secondary, located in a village just a few kilometers from Jeremiah’s garden, were 530 students (some of which were boarders at the school) that initiated a similar idea. By using the excess water from the well, the students built a garden that allowed them to harvest vegetables, cook them and eat them as part of their daily meals. Not only had this well brought health to the children and the community, but it had brought nourishment and sustenance through food.
“More leaders are starting to catch the vision for how clean water can help with their economy,” Dennis comments. “The deep-capped wells are really being utilized. Not only is each well constantly pumping clean water for thousands of people, but it is creating sustainable and profitable solutions for the local people.”
To date, 73 productive wells have been drilled in Tanzania and with more leaders like Jeremiah and the students thinking creatively, GAiN’s impact will continue to become more effective and long-term.