Community Pumps in Niger

As a result of a major water issue in rural Niger, community pumps are being erected in several areas. Sixty-four percent of the rural population in Niger does not have access to safe drinking water. Approximately nine out of 10 individuals do not have access to an adequate waste disposal system.

These water shortages encourage sickness, stifle education and economic progress, and account for the bulk of baby and child fatalities in rural Niger.

Niger is a drought-stricken country on the Sahara Desert’s outskirts. Because there is minimal rainfall, most people’s daily requirements must be met by groundwater. However, there are several issues with this conventional water supply.

Because hand-dug wells lack concrete liners, they are vulnerable to contamination from garbage and other pollutants seeping in. Because traditional wells lack pumps, women must pull water up by hand, which is a strenuous and time-consuming task.

Existing wells are widely dispersed, requiring women and children to spend hours and travel hundreds of kilometers each day only to supply water for their families.

Many of these issues can be alleviated by a proliferation of modern drilled wells and pump systems, but most towns lack the financial resources to fund drilled wells or purchase and maintain pumps.

International agencies such as UNICEF and the World Bank have been able to assist in recent years.

More than a quarter million people now have access to clean water thanks to UNICEF’s funding for the building and maintenance of boreholes and wells.

Local drillers and pump makers will be able to build 100 wells and pumps each year, giving water to an extra 25,000 people yearly, according to a World Bank initiative.

The construction of more modern wells is helping to alleviate the health issue caused by a lack of safe drinking water. It’s also having a positive impact on communities.

Women and children are relieved of the burden of transporting water, which takes up so much of their time and energy. Women and children have more time to pursue their educations or other economic possibilities now that water is readily available near to home. Many community source pumps are strategically placed near schools to encourage students to attend lessons near the source of their family’s water.