Niels Lenderink via web
In the Mpanga catchment, Uganda (Rwenzori region) JESE has been figuring out where the best potential sites are for construction of 11 (eleven) shallow wells. These shallow wells are to be build to improve the access to drinking water. As a prerequisite for constructing the shallow wells, JESE trained and demonstrated the (already build) construction of Soli- and Water Conservation (SWC) structures upstream to the communities. This was coupled with training on the synergies that exist between environment, sanitation, water and agriculture.
As a result, community members have managed to replicate these SWC technologies that they learnt during the trainings and are currently incorporating them in their own farms, as well as mobilizing labor for the construction of SWC technologies upstream of the potential sites for each shallow wells.
Along with the focus on improving drinking water access, the catchment and water resources management project also focuses on the improvement of the quality of drinking water. Therefore, JESE is fostering the Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) approach to help communities in Rwebikwato analyze their own sanitation situation evidenced by open defecation and poor garbage disposal. Six steps embedded in the CLTS manual include among others; Defecation transect walk (the walk of shame), mapping of defecation areas, bottle demonstration, calculation of shit and medical expenses As a result, the communities so far triggered have learnt to appreciate the inter-connections between sanitation and water pollution which is a good recipe for sustainable water resource management. More so, JESE has been facilitating the process of formulating Water User committees for each planned shallow well, and targeting them for trainings in O&M, water source protection and the 3R approach. So far, all eleven Water User committees, one for each shallow well, have been established. Last but not the least, JESE has been mobilizing the community to establish a community based tree nursery from which seedlings will be obtained to rehabilitate degraded sites in Rwebikwato sub catchment. As a result, 20,000 seedlings including 15000 species of Grivelia and 5000 species of Musizi were achieved in this process.