Over 2 billion people lack access to safe water around the world. Women and children typically spend more than four hours a day walking to collect water that is often not safe for drinking. And more than 840,000 people die each year from water-related diseases. Dreams are not able to come true when the death is the result of contracting a water-borne illness.
Developing safe and sustainable water sources is critical. It is also necessary to build systems with simple and appropriate technology that can be sustained through locally available resources and skills. CHOICE Humanitarian began in Bolivia with a water system in the early 1980s – and that system is still functioning today.
Using our Model of Leadership Development we help communities organize themselves and learn to partner with their local government, universities, and other NGOs to create appropriate water systems.
We work with communities to make water available for family gardens, animal production, planting trees, sanitation, cooking. The ways to make water systems are as numerous as the illnesses that can result from drinking unclean water. The type of system depends on the technology communities have access to, water source, size of the community, and the environmental conditions.
Sources of systems include deepwater wells, Ferro cement cisterns, rain catchment systems, natural springs, and gravity fed systems.