Mbeya Water Project

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Celebrating a decade of Kiota – KIWOHEDE partnership (2003-2013)


Since 2003, Kiota have supported KIWOHEDE by funding important and strategic work that has otherwise been difficult to fund. We have provided vital funding for water provision and community health training projects in Buguruni, a slum area of Dar es Salaam, and Mbeya (see below). We have also provided funding for three building projects, with the hope of safeguarding the organisation against dramatically increasing rental costs and ensuring long term viability for KIWOHEDE’s essential work in protecting and supporting disadvantaged young people to continue. We are currently funding the running costs, including salaries, of a pilot secondary school with holistic onsite support for young women (and a few boys) who otherwise would not have had the opportunity to continue their education (see Learn how we plan to spend the money raised at Glastonbury Festival 2013).


Spotlight on one of our previous projects
Realising the right to clean water in Mbeya
One of KIWOHEDE’s centres, the Invumwe centre in the Mbeya region in the south west of Tanzania, was lacking clean running water. Sourcing safe water was difficult and sporadic, and sanitation, washing and cleaning facilities were inadequate.
The aims of the project were:
• To provide a clean, safe adequate supply of water to the Mbeya centre.
This was achieved through the construction of a water pipe from a mains water supply some distance away to the centre.
• To provide training in the operation and maintenance of the new water supply.
It was important that the staff and service users were properly trained in the use and upkeep of the new system. It is quite common for international NGOs to start projects but not offer training in how to overcome problems or maintenance issues if they arise. There are many un-used water projects across Tanzania for this reason. Workshops were held including how to maintain the system and how to fix common problems.
• To improve standards of health in the area by educating the community about the importance of good hygiene and sanitation.
In this community, many people lacked education and information about causes of diseases relating to using an unsafe water supply, including the effects that unhygienic practises can have on the spread of disease.
For example, without an understanding of all of the risks, many families and communities living in poverty empty latrines into rivers, streams or other open spaces. Aside from the unpleasantness, many are not aware of the devastating effects this can have on their health and the health of their neighbours.
KIWOHEDE organised workshops to educate the community about the importance of good hygiene and sanitation, and to increase understanding of what measures can be taken to prevent infection spreading unnecessarily.
• To provide training in methods of income-generating projects.
Many of the young people who attend the centres have not had the opportunity to go to, or to complete, school. As such, the majority of young people who turn to KIWOHEDE have limited choices in order to support themselves and any children or siblings that they care for.
For those in poor, rural areas such as Mbeya, many see receiving education and training as a way out of poverty and a route to better life. Unfortunately traffickers also know how alluring the promise of education and work in the city is. Vulnerable young people can fall prey to traffickers, and can leave their homes willingly with the blessing of their family on a promise of schooling in the city. The reality however is very different and many girls are forced to work as domestic servants, bar girls and prostitutes. They are often exploited, abused and don’t receive the education they were promised. KIWOHEDE helps to combat this by ensuring that those who have not completed their primary school education finish their compulsive schooling by providing them with the uniforms and books they need but could not afford. They also offer training and the skills required to generate an income without having to turn to dangerous alternatives.
As Mbeya is a rural area, the water project enabled the centre to have an irrigation system and those attending the centre can now be trained in farming techniques, cooking and running food outlets and how to grow flowers and vegetables to sell.  

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Images: The service users at Ivumwe Kiwohede centre in Mbeya, South West Tanzania with their new irrigation system and huts for learning catering techniques.