Water is a fundamental need of humans. Having accessible clean water is a right of every citizen. And having access can aid in preventing the spread of waterborne diseases like cholera, diarrhea, and hepatitis A. A notable indirect impact on daily lives is also present with the shortage of clean water. Adults are forced to walk miles on foot in search of clean water, and children are forced to drop out of schools to aid their parents in the fight for basic needs. Rotaract always aims to make positive changes in the lives of people. ‘Dividhara’ is an initiative through Together SL to help a selected group of people fulfill their need for accessible clean water.
About 6 km from Dummalasuriya and 18 km from Naththandiya situates a beautiful village called Iddagahapitya in the Puttalam district of North-Western Province. With nearly a population of 425 and around 85 families, the village’s primary source of income is farming.
So their need for water in their daily life is vital. As the village is situated far from the urban areas, there is no proper pipeline of water laid. Though lakes are available at a distance from the village, they are used for agricultural activities and not for consumption. They depend heavily on rainfall for their supply of water. Surface level wells are there, which get collected during the rain. But when the dry season arrives, they all get dried up.
The village does have a tube well, which can be used to get water for drinking. But the foot valve of the tube well has been broken and was left in a state of dilapidation. As a result, the water has become unsuitable for drinking, and the surrounding area has been overgrown with shrubs. The Rotaract Clubs of CFPS Law School, Cinnamon Gardens, College of Chemical Sciences, Colombo East, Colombo Midtown, Colombo Regency, Colombo West, Faculty of Science – University of Colombo, ICBT, MSI, Royal Institute of Colombo, and University of Colombo Faculty of Arts have identified that by suitable and immediate action to repair the tube well, the villagers get access to clean drinking water, and struggles in their daily life will be reduced.
As a first step, the team received the quotation for the project from a local tube well construction company within a radius of the location. The team is hoping to fix the tube well with the tube well construction company. Along with that, the team is planning to install a purification system to ensure that the villagers access clean drinking water after renovating the tube well. A water tank to store water will be also installed so that the water would still be available during the dry season. After the construction is finished, signboards will be placed surrounding the area to inform the villagers of the importance of drinking clean drinking water in both the Sinhala and Tamil languages to highlight the importance of having access to clean water, a series of webinars by a panel of experts is also to be carried out with the presence of villagers. Through that, the villagers will be informed of the hazards of contaminated water and how they can be prevented by clean water sources. Further during the event, leaflets and a special set of documents will be distributed among the villagers.
In collaboration with The Foundation of Goodness, the villagers of Iddagapitiya will be able to obtain clean drinking water this time after years of walking to quench their thirst.
Penned By – The District Regional Engagement Team in collaboration with the Media Unit and the District Editorial Team