Water is the essential element for the well-being of the communities. The villages of Ariang and Lang never had a well since creation. Traditionally, people used to get their drinking water from the Lol and Kom Rivers running through the villages or from boreholes during the dry season. Water contamination is rampant, resulting in many water-borne diseases.
Seeing the wells being drilled was an historic moment in the villages of Ariang and Lang. Mere words cannot describe the excitement exhibited by the villagers, especially young children—who were so amazed by the drilling process—seeing clean drinking water actually flowing into their outstretched hands.
The beneficial impact of well water in educating girls
The significance of the hand pump well goes beyond providing clean drinking water for the students and people in the village, which of course is absolutely essential. It also ensures a higher attendance of girls in the school. Traditionally, girls were the ones walking miles every day to fetch water for the families, preventing them from being able to attend school. Now that the hand pumps are in place, making the daily travel for water unnecessary, we expect the population of girl students to grow significantly, breaking the gender gap.
Preventing Disease to Enable More Children to Attend School
Another very important by-product of clean water is the prevention of cholera. Many young children die each year of cholera and other water–related diseases. The provision of portable and potable water will forever change the living conditions and the way of life in the village.Resources analyst Erik Peterson, of the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, describes the water crisis this way:
“At any given time, close to half the population of the developing world is suffering from waterborne diseases associated with inadequate provision of water and sanitation services,” Mr. Peterson explained.”There are about four billion cases of diarrhea disease per year, resulting in about one or two million deaths, some ninety percent of which, tragically, are in children under the age of five.”