April 9, 2021 – FUNDED Our partner began serving in Dodola in 2019, focusing on communities with the greatest need for safe water access.
In Dodola, most families live in traditional mud-thatched homes roofed with dried brush from the surrounding forest. A majority of families rely on agriculture for their annual income, and water scarcity and water quality are among what the communities deem their greatest problems.
Water usage is exceptionally low, with the average household using only 13 gallons of water per day between five-six people. The World Health Organization recommends a minimum of 13 gallons per day per person to meet the basic needs of a human body like hydration and hygiene and sanitation. This means that in Dodola, families are surviving off of what amounts to sips of water a day.
Gathering that minimal amount of water takes two hours and 12 minutes a day in the dry season. Women and children often travel to unprotected springs or rivers. The contaminated water is dangerous for everyone, but particularly children under the age of five years old. Their immune systems are still developing, and they aren’t able to fight the illnesses like adults.
The good news is, this is entirely preventable. Lifewater’s work in the surrounding area shows that waterborne illness can be nearly eliminated with basic access to things like clean drinking water, proper sanitation, and washing hands with soap.