Oasis in a Water Scarce Village - A New Lease of Life

Published March 8, 2016 by Adanmagan Ali Gedi

Thirty four year old Bishara is a mother of six living in Deg-Elema village in the Lower Juba region of Somalia. To earn a living and provide for her family, she keeps cattle and sells the milk that she gets from the cattle at the nearby Dhobley market.

Bishara and her neighbors fetching water from the newly sunk borehole.Deg-Elema village has no permanent source of water and the community members rely on harvesting rainwater which can be collected from the few existing water pans.  During the dry season, the community members are forced to travel for over 18km to Liboi town in Kenya to fetch water. 

Due to lack of water in the village, Bishara would purchase water from water vendors in the neighbouring Dhobley town at a cost of US$25 cents per 20 litter jerry can. On average she would spend between US$2-5 per week on water. In the absence of the water vendors, Bishara and her elder children would walk for long distances to fetch water. The long walks were tiring and took up much of their time.

In February 2015, Bishara and other community members were informed that Adeso had received financial support from Muslim Charity to construct a borehole in the village. This news was received with much excitement by the community, who hoped that they would soon be able to more easily access water.

Upon completion of the project, Bishara was one of the first community members who retrieved water from the new borehole.

“The construction of the borehole in our village has saved me and my family the time and energy that we previously spent in fetching water.  Previously, I could not get enough water for cooking, drinking, cleaning and washing clothes. Now, I can finally get enough water for drinking, cooking and for all my household chores.  This has really changed my life and that of my family.” Bishara said.