Water and sanitation are at the heart of our work to help people climb out of poverty and IDP is working among four Woredas (districts) at Debark, Adi Arkay, Beyeda and Janamora in the North Gonder Zone of Amhara Region, northern Ethiopia.
Here, our project aims to solve water shortage and water purity problems by:
- providing safe drinking water,
- improving sanitation,
- combating widespread illness and
- helping to eradicate communicable diseases caused by water-borne parasites and infections.
The overall objective of our Water and Sanitation project is to enhance the well-being and productivity of farming communities. Initially we are helping to solve the water shortage and water purity problems of communities totalling 5,000 people through the provision of an adequate, reliable and clean water supply and access to sanitation facilities. Our project will also make a tangible contribution to the local economy by providing water supply services that meet the needs of livestock, industry and personal users.
The Noth Gonder Zone of the Amhara Region (the 2nd largest Region of the country) in northern Ethiopia is one of our main project sites. The communities in our project area are faced with multiple problems relating to health, food security, infrastructure, education, harmful traditional practices and other basic necessities.
The social, economical, political and technological background of the area is very much at the grass roots level. Poor sanitation and lack of a reliable supply of safe water has serious consequences for children and mothers, as they are medically, socially, culturally and physically vulnerable.
Specifically, we aim to address the problems of clean water coverage, the incidence and prevalence of water-borne diseases (such as diarrhoea and intestinal infections), water-washed diseases (such as trachoma and scabies), poor sanitation practices in the community and the vulnerability of mothers and children.
All of the top ten diseases in Ethiopia are directly or indirectly related to poor water and sanitation which, in turn, leads to problems in maternal and child health as women and girls spend much of their time fetching water. This is also one of the causes of drop-out of female students from school and, consequently, early marriage.