William Wajom-nitho (53) lives in Atido village, Nebbi district with his wife, six children, and three grandchildren. He is the chairperson of the Water User Committee, responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of the borehole at Avubu Primary School.
What was life like before the borehole?
I have lived in Atido village all my life. The community built a protected spring at the stream down the valley that was our main water source. We drank from it and used it for all household chores.
However it was easily destroyed by heavy water run offs. During wet season the water would become brown and smelly. And there was not enough water for all three surrounding villages. There were always long lines of jerricans and the women fought a lot due to overwaiting.
How has life changed?
My family members, especially my grandchildren, now experience less water borne diseases. We have hardly suffered from stomach pain after the borehole, which in the past has meant my grandchildren would miss school. One term, one of them failed to sit their end of term exams because of stomach related issues. My family depends on this borehole entirely. Even my young grandchildren can easily pump the water and the flow is great, so they no longer spend a lot of time fetching water.
In Atido village, early last year, almost every household had a case of skin rash. However, with the borehole in use, the skin disease just disappeared as time progressed. I suspect it must have been cause by the use of the dirty spring water.
What improvements have you seen since the borehole has been installed?
The children in our nearby Avubu Primary School are very smart and clean because they no longer use unclean water to wash their uniforms. The water source has brought about unity among the different villages. We come together and make decisions as one team.
More children report to school on time than before as they no longer have to fetch water before school. Even in the school, hand washing facilities that used to be empty now have clean water for children and teachers at the school.
What else can we do for your community?
In our school meeting, we realised that parents are not doing enough for our girls to keep them in school, mainly due to failure to provide sanitary facilities, changing rooms and bathing room. We need emergency pads for girls at school and to improve the latrine facilities.
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Photos of the Avubu Primary School Borehole Project in action!