Mapwesere Village, Malawi is a rural village in the west side of Thyolo District, Malawi. Mapwesere Village is in great need of clean water. This impoverished village [lies] in a completely flat and dambo land (swampy land.) There is no clean water source for this village. Their current water source is a hand-dug well, fed by a stream in a swampy area. The community shares their water source with animals, as people graze their animals there. The animals relieve themselves in the water and around the banks of the water source area, and so is
quite polluted. Rainy season is bad as the water becomes so very contaminated with the run-off into the water source. During the rainy season, with such worsening conditions, people are more at risk for death due to drinking the water, especially children. Since this is the only water source for them, people drink it despite these things. They keep on using the water because they have no alternative. During the dry season, water is more scarce as the swampy areas may dry up.
Also, the water is covered with vegetation, some of it rotting vegetation. A good home for insects. The water can sometimes have a bad, rotten smell.
Women gather the swampy water
This community has no clinics or health centers, so they have to go for many kilometers to reach the district hospital and because of this, victims may die before meeting the doctor. Kids often miss school because of illness and having to fetch water.
In this village, the most deadly water-related disease is cholera, followed by dysentery, and stomach pain with vomiting.
Testimony from the video below:
I am Merin Jeruwata. I am the leader of FGW [Farming God’s Way]. This is our well where we draw water to use in our homes. In this place is a very dirty place as you can see. People from this area, even the domestic animals do come and spoil the water. Children and others, we have been afflicted with diseases. Cholera and the other bowel opening and vomiting diseases. We are pleading, please help us. And may God bless you. Amen.
Currently, Malawi is experiencing a serious and deadly cholera outbreak in the nation, one of the worst in its history. In the past year over 50K reported cases and 1500 deaths. The Republic of Malawi Ministry of Health provides a daily update for reported cholera cases. The dates we checked in recent times showed an average of 400 cases reported each day, an average of 740 people in the hospital, and a 3.16% death rate among reported cases. This disease can be avoided and stopped by providing access to see, clean water.
The total cost of a borehole well and a hand pump is $3,500 for materials and labor. If funds are received in June 2023, we expect the project to start in July and be completed in August.
The ground is flat and swampy
Our ministry partner, Charles Mithowa, is the main director for these well projects and has completed many. These are very reliable partners and we have had excellent success in our relationship with them to date. Heaven’s Family sister ministry, Farming God’s Way, has been working with Charles for some years now. The farming program is changing lives of poor farmers by helping them raise more food and teaching discipleship. The government of Malawi has recognized the success of our Farming God’s Way program with these partners.
We do not do projects unless we have formed an ongoing partnership with any ministry partner who is involved in any Safe Water Ministry project, with a good track record of accountability. We require ‘before’ marker photos where the well will be drilled. We collect pertinent details that describe the need, collect completion photos, reports and testimonies. The driller will be the same as long as they keep doing good work. They have been very accommodating.
We desire to protect the on-going success of the well once it’s complete. As a part of our process, we require all of our ministry partners to agree to prepare for and manage any future maintenance on the well. The receiving partner ministry may take on the responsibility and/or they may create a water commission, have community meetings, and have the community agree to contribute in some way, according to ability. It is very important that the local people know that this is ‘their’ well. When they know they have ownership they will work to take care of it best they can. The whole community agrees how best to manage the water asset. Often times very small fees are charged for the future management of the well. The process varies from place to place.
Here with this particular ministry, ‘God’s Love Groups’, discipleship groups in place for our Farming God’s Way ministry, will direct some of the management. The beneficiaries will contribute a small amount to pay for maintenance. Both the GLG teams and community authorities shall manage the property for permanent use for the community.
Thick vegetation grows and rots on top of the water.
Mapwesere Village is in urgent need of clean water. There is no clean water source available to them; nor is there [any] nearby health clinic. The benefits will be many. The people will have clean water to drink, and water to bathe with and cook with. The kids will have better health and can go to school regularly, as they will not have to spend so much time [fetching] water.
This impoverished village is far from a hospital. Time is critical when suffering from acute illness, so they will save lives, time and money [spent] on medicine, hospital expense, and transport expense with the gift of clean water. The people will be healthier to work vs. [having] downtime being sick. The people will see how the Lord does care for them through such a transformative gift. The FGW presence will be strengthened and more people will become involved in meaningful disciple-making groups.
Mapwesera Village was introduced to FGW (a no-till farming method ministry) in 2019. There was a drought in the whole country of Malawi in 2019. Families worked very hard to raise food, but the drought killed their crops. So, FGW GLGs came and worked with them in small groups. For example, they covered their fields with a 100% “God’s blanket” mulch layer to retain moisture. The people saw how the plants stayed soft and green; they began to discuss and learn. The people and local authorities caught the vision and began to practice FGW in their community to fight drought and chronic hunger in their families. They humbled themselves before the Lord to become disciples of Jesus and practice FGW & GLGs. Now, the groups using the method are helping to save others from hunger and the ministry continues.
FGW is the physical ministry of growing food, there is also the discipleship component, GLGs (God’s Love Groups) of FGW. This has helped the people to learn to work together and to follow the Lord more closely. The meetings are regular, the Bible is studied, they pray, and the whole community is built up. The program also increases dignity and purpose and provides them with success, which is another benefit for these very poor people.
The women carry the heavy water back to their homes.
All projects are made possible by World Changers.