Mariatu operates a hand-pump from in her village, and life-giving water flows from this new well.
Mariatu collects the water, and she will bring it back a short distance to her home. She will use the water for her daily farming activities, for washing clothes and for providing safe drinking water for her family.
It wasn’t always as easy.
Mariatu Kamara, 43, lives with her husband and children, aged from 3 to 8 years, at the far end of her village. Mariatu has had a challenging life. She lost her first husband, and despite remarrying, she is often alone farming and caring for the family while her husband is out of the village for work.
Clean and safe water is essential for Mariatu and her family to survive. Yet Sierra Leone is one of the poorest countries in the world, having been devastated by civil war and the ebola crisis. As a result, access to safe water and sanitation is a challenge across the country.
Getting water has not always been this easy”, Mariatu says, “With my family, we have been struggling all our lives with poor water provision.”
Before the well was constructed, the closest water point was a swamp located one mile away from the village. The water from the swamp was not clean, and carrying that water to her home was almost impossible for Mariatu.
“This situation affected every aspect of our family life. Not only primary needs such as drinking or cooking, but also the possibility to give my children clean school uniforms”.
Only a few metres away from her home is the recently built community well. Mariatu has been able to triple the amount of water available for her family thanks to the new well, constructed by Trócaire’s local partner organisation KADDRO.
Mariatu is now able to collect water from the hand-pump by herself. She saves time and money which she can now invest in increasing her income from her farming activities.
“As a woman, I feel safer now, having the well so close to my house and not having to walk long distances to collect water”.
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