WaterAid's aim is to improve the lives of poor people in Tanzania through the provision of safe water, sanitation and hygiene education. We use technologies that are affordable, appropriate to local conditions and easy to maintain by the community themselves.
An unsafe water source in the Singida District.
Credit: WaterAid / Marco Betti
Tanzania is one of the poorest countries in the world. Essential water and sanitation services are limited - with less than half of the population having access to a latrine. It is estimated that on average women and children spend over two hours a day collecting water. However, journeys of six to seven hours are not unusual in areas on the central plateau.
WaterAid's involvement in Tanzania began in 1983 in the Dodoma Region and continued throughout the 1990s in a collaboration known as WAMMA between WaterAid and water engineers, and hygiene and education staff in the Dodoma Local Government.
In the last ten years WaterAid has expanded its presence into the Tabora and Singida Regions, the Kiteto District of Manyara Region and the Temeke Municipality in Dar es Salaam. We work with a wealth of local partners, including church groups, municipal and district councils and local development organizations.
Our work in Tanzania is vital, as without water and sanitation preventable childhood ailments like diarrhea are killers.
Achievements to date
- Helped more than a million people in Tanzania gain access to safe drinking water and sanitation services
- In a project in the suburban and rural areas of Singida Region, WaterAid formed a strong partnership with local government agencies, partner organizations and the private sector to deliver water and sanitation services to 40,000 people over three years
A safe water supply established with WaterAid's help in Dar es Salaam.
Credit: WaterAid / Marco Betti
In association with its network of local partners, WaterAid assists communities in setting up low cost, sustainable projects.
Communities are encouraged to participate in all stages of development projects, from planning and construction to management and maintenance. This self-help approach provides a real sense of ownership and motivation to ensure long term effectiveness.
Our projects in Tanzania require individual communities to determine themselves how much they can afford to pay for running costs and to contribute towards the set up costs.
Water supplies are usually established by rehabilitating boreholes or constructing shallow wells. In semi-arid areas such as Dodoma, where water tables are very low, diesel engines and pumps are often needed to pump the water from the deep boreholes.
The sanitation program typically includes the construction of simple pit latrines and dish racks and the digging of garbage disposal pits.
Hygiene education takes various forms, including the highly effective child-to-child approach where children receive hygiene messages which they then pass on to their friends and family. Among other things hygiene messages focus on the importance of hand washing, the safe handling of water, use of latrines and restricting the access of cattle and goats to areas around the home.
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