A newly constructed water tank is changing the lives of the residents of Qatis Village in Banissa, Mandera County. Alio Abdi, a 54-year old resident of Qatis and a member of the Qatis Village water management committee is excited at the impact the tank is already making. He explained: “Collecting water takes time. To get water for drinking, bathing, cooking, and other household needs, we spend hours every day traveling to water sources, waiting in line, and carrying heavy loads several times a day and often that water is not clean and safe for human consumption. We could be focusing these lost man hours to be productive.”
Before the intervention - a European Union-funded initiative under the BORESHA project - access to clean water was a nightmare for the Qatis community members. The women and girls were the most affected due to the traditional gender roles. They would only occasionally be joined by young boys on the long 10-km daily round-trip to fetch water. The tank has made access to clean and safe drinking water a lot easier for the residents of Qatis Village. To prevent the spread of water-borne diseases and help improve hygiene and sanitation standards, BORESHA is working on rebuilding and rehabilitating boreholes and larger water points in Mandera. In Qatis village, BORESHA has constructed a new 230 cubic metre underground water tank, installed a 10,000L elevated water tank and a solar pumping system serving an estimated household population of 3,142.