Akid Water System Project – Cameroon
Akid, Muambong, Bangem Sub-Division, Kupe-Manenguba Division, SW Region, Cameroon
Akid is comprised of a group of fewer than 100 people, all of whom work as farmers. The residents are very poor and mainly earn money through the sale of coffee.
The community is very remote from the neighboring towns, and thus has to be self-sufficient. It is entirely cut off from the main town and market during the rainy season, when the town is only accessible by foot.
Currently, the people of Akid use local streams as their only water source. Streams are generally contaminated, as people also use them for going to the bathroom, washing laundry, taking baths, and disposing of waste.
Additionally, the streams are located downhill from farms and therefore get polluted from runoff pesticides. The people are not only drinking directly from the streams, but they are also using the river water to create their main food source, fufu.
As of now, to get clean water, women and children must fetch it from rivers far distances away, spending much of their time each day in the process.
There is a high incidence of gastrointestinal illness, and some reported cases of typhoid. Also, there are many skin infections and incidents of filariasis.
Additionally, the village has very high rates of malaria. The majority of patients admitted to the hospital each month are treated for that disease. The stagnant river water provides a good breeding opportunity for mosquitoes, and water stored in homes in uncovered buckets may contain mosquito larvae.
This project is to increase access of the people of Akid to potable water through the construction of a water system.
A water filtration tank will be built to purify water diverted from the local streams. The water from the tank will then be pumped into the main villages to several stand taps for the people to use.
Planning for the project began with the creation of a group to oversee the project. The Community Development Committee meets every other week and collects contributions from the population. They have raised substantial funds to be used for this project, and are very serious about its success.
To identify the best water source, the community paid for an expert, Simon Mbeng, to come out to the village, and provided transportation and lodging. He surveyed the area and confirmed the water sources and then created budgets and plans for the project.
An aggregate and sand filtration tank will be built next to the stream, which will be connected to a tank for storing the filtered water. That water will then be pumped to the main tank above the village.
The distance from the river to the uphill tank above the village is roughly 300 meters. The pump will be run by a 5-horsepower generator. The generator will run on diesel, which requires general maintenance, but the community will be trained on this and funds will be collected to pay for repairs.
Water from the main tank will run down to the community. The distance of this tank to the village is approximately 330 meters. From there, water will be distributed to a few taps within the community, a distance of 240 meters.
Local plumbers and contractors will oversee the construction of the system and will use community members to supply the labor. The construction should only take 3 to 4 days once the materials are acquired.
The town has already started collecting local materials, such as rocks and sand and timber. Community work days will be established to finish the project.
Water Charity funds will be used to pay for skilled labor and to purchase the pump and other building materials, including concrete, PVC pipe, rebar, and supplies.
The community will supply the labor for the digging of the pipeline, the laying of concrete, and the carrying of materials to the sites. The town is hoping to complete the project by the end of December, during the dry season.
Water sanitation lessons have already begun, and the use of the system will be demonstrated. A screening for malnutrition has been completed, and nutrition lessons will be started.
70 people in Akid will benefit from the project.
Peace Corps Volunteer Directing Project
Monitoring and Maintenance
To ensure the sustainability of the water system, members of the Community Development Committee will receive training. They will be in charge of maintaining the water system, and funds will be collected to cover the costs of any repairs.
Surveys will be conducted to ensure that people are using the system properly.
This is an important infrastructure project that will improve the health and well-being of the community. It will decrease disease resulting from dirty water and will result in a time savings for those responsible for retrieving water for household use.
Funds raised in excess of the project amount will be allocated to other projects in the country.
Donations Collected to Date
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Donations of any amount will be appreciated. The full amount will give you “naming rights”, if that is something you would like.
Dollar Amount Needed
This project has been completed. To read about the conclusion, CLICK HERE.