Today was full of new opportunities. The day started with our vehicles all packed up with buckets and filters heading to Siaya County for multiple water filter distributions. But first, we had a meeting with the governor to discuss the UZima Filters and our work in his community. A very late phone call the night before put this meeting together. The Siaya Governor, H.E. Cornel Rasanga Amoth, spent over an hour with us and our team. He even pulled in his Ministry of Health and Ministry of Water.
It was a meaningful time of sharing the heart and vision of Just One Africa and also hearing his vision for his community. Due to the work we have done with our partner Phoebe, mobilizing widows with sustainability projects and with our Clean Water Program, there is much that we share in common.
We demonstrated the filter right in his office with dirty water and all. He was very impressed and you could see the wheels turning as he began thinking about the benefits this filter would provide for his communities. Many of his people draw water straight from Lake Victoria or from the many streams feeding it, which are all very contaminated and not fit for human consumption. He even said the water from his own borehole needed to be boiled before they could use it. Part of our team will come back for a follow up meeting on Friday and provide training on the filters that we left for him to use at his home and share with other who live in the rural community that he lives in.
Hearing from all the movers and shakers in the room today was encouraging as the challenges of our day are being met head on with creative solutions that take into account culture, tradition, and the specific community needs. Having conversations and building relationships is first and foremost. Thankful for our time today with the governor and his staff and looking forward to seeing how we can continue to build relationships on every level in the communities we serve.
“Africa’s largest fresh water source, Lake Victoria, has been named as a major breeding ground for waterborne diseases, putting millions of people at risk, officials warned on Monday.
People living on Lake Victoria’s islands are at risk of cholera, typhoid, and dysentery as most of them drink water directly from the second largest freshwater lake in the world in terms of surface area. The lake is shared by three East African nations –Tanzania, Uganda and Kenya.” Dodma, Business-Standard.com 2/16/16
Since 2012, Just One Africa has distributed close to 1000 filters in Siaya County which is in the Nyanza Province of Western Kenya. These filters have provided clean, safe drinking water to almost 25,000 people there. Cholera, typhoid, dysentery and other water borne disease have been totally eliminated by these filters. We have seen tremendous life change happen as we help to lift these communities out of a cycle of sickness and poverty.