More than 780 million people lack access to clean, safe drinking water. This reality means that many women and children around the world spend hours every day walking miles to collect water from streams and puddles that are usually contaminated. The unsafe water causes disease and death, and the time spent collecting water means sacrificing other opportunities such as going to school, farming, or starting a business. Providing clean water is a crucial first step in bringing health and economic opportunity to a community.
It sounds simple, but there are challenges to providing clean water. In many villages, the water table is too deep for traditional hand pumps. Even if water is accessible, the pumps are often unreliable, sometimes needing repairs after only a few months of use. Alarming statistics show that in many African countries nearly half of the installed pumps are no longer working. Tragically, there are over 125,000 nonfunctioning wells in Africa, leaving 31 million people with no access to clean water.
These issues create significant challenges for project partners such as Water For Good as they try to reach deep water tables and are concerned about always keeping the water flowing.