Armed with small testing strips, Dinerza Escampini Estrada makes sure the water system CWS helped to install in her village remains clean and safe. Our practice is to make sure a community can keep the water supply flowing, so we train water committee volunteers to maintain their water system.
Dinerza knows the power of water.As a woman, having an equal voice in the water system’s operation is a major step forward for Dinerza. She remembers how much time she and the women in her village spent collecting water every day. She remembers the dirty water – and the children suffering from chronic diarrhea. And, she remembers dry seasons without any water at all.
Now, the children aren’t sick nearly as often. The women have more time for activities that help support their families. The village’s 22 families pay around 25 cents a month to make sure the water supply stays safe and is well-maintained by the water committee. That responsibility is a burden Dinerza gladly bears.
Even though the village of Biloto, Indonesia is surrounded by lush tropical jungle, the greenery is deceiving. Here, people once endured a 6-km walk to get fresh water for daily living.
But, no more. Village leader Filipus Oematan and others asked CWS to help them construct a reservoir. In decades of work in Indonesia, we’ve learned water systems are more complicated than digging a pond. That’s why we provided sand, cement and tools only after the village formed a committee to plan and maintain the reservoir.
“My wife and children spend more time on something other than only getting water,” Filipus says. “There are so many advantages to having the reservoir here. We have an abundance of water for daily consumption. We use the water for drinking, washing, watering the field and for our cattle. We can plant tomato, eggplant, water spinach and bok choy for household consumption. Moreover, we want to use the land next to the reservoir to plant other crops or vegetables. We plan to breed fresh water fish, too.”
A long-term benefit that helps a village meet its nutritional needs. All together, it’s a match to quench even the driest thirst.