By Misgana Godito

Water for Good has been a cornerstone in the Central African Republic (CAR) for the last 20 years! Over these 2 decades, we’ve been working to provide safe water to communities in need. Last month, during a field visit to the Berberati site– a neighborhood on the edge of Carnot in the CAR– I had the privilege of witnessing the impact of effective maintenance practices on the water supply systems in the region. One instance that caught my eye was a borehole in Djembé.  With remarkable longevity, this borehole has reliably been providing water for the last 14 years.  

What is the secret behind this enduring success?  

Water for Good has a dedicated and well-trained maintenance team. In this specific community, there are 420 households, with a total population of 1,600 people, all of whom rely on this borehole for safe water. The community is actively involved in supporting the maintenance team, ensuring that any necessary repairs are promptly addressed whenever the borehole breaks down. 

 

The Role of Professionalized Maintenance 

During my visit, I observed the maintenance team in action while they were repairing the Djembé borehole. While some residents aided, the primary focus was on the professional team’s expertise and efficiency in addressing the issue. Water for Good aims to establish a professionalized maintenance model, where the community contributes financially for professional services, rather than managing the infrastructure themselves. This approach mirrors successful systems in developed countries, where residents pay for water services and professional companies handle all maintenance and repairs. 

While there are Water Point Management Committees (CGPEs) that act as intermediaries between Water for Good and the communities, the goal always remains clear: to ensure water points are maintained professionally. This strategy ensures the water points are not just physical structures, but essential parts of the community’s daily life and well-being, sustained through a reliable and professional service model. 

Expertise and Efficiency in Action 

Witnessing the expertise and efficiency of the Water for Good maintenance team as they diagnosed and repaired the broken system was a testament to their dedication and skill. The team worked tirelessly, utilizing their in-depth knowledge and experience to restore the borehole’s functionality. This proactive approach to maintenance not only addresses immediate issues but also helps prevent future breakdowns, ensuring the longevity of the water supply systems. 

As the repairs were completed and the water once again flowed from the borehole, the sense of relief and gratitude among the community was tangible. This experience highlighted the critical role that proactive maintenance plays in ensuring the sustainability of water supply systems, ultimately improving the quality of life for all those who depend on them. 

Strategic Maintenance for Long-Term Sustainability 

The success story of the Djembé borehole serves as a shining example of how strategic maintenance approaches can lead to long-term sustainability and resilience in water infrastructure. Thanks to the unwavering dedication of the Water for Good team and the active involvement of the local community, access to clean and safe water remains a reality for the people of CAR. 

Through its efforts, Water for Good has not only improved the health and well-being of countless individuals but has also empowered communities to thrive. Access to clean water is not just a necessity but a fundamental human right, and Water for Good’s work in CAR is a shining example of how organizations can make a lasting impact through sustainable and community-focused initiatives. 

A Beacon of Hope in CAR 

Water for Good represents a source of hope in the CAR, providing essential water solutions that have transformed lives and communities. With a strong emphasis on maintenance and repair, the organization ensures that access to safe and clean water remains uninterrupted and reliable. The fact that water points installed two decades ago are still operational speaks volumes about the dedication and effectiveness of Water for Good’s approach. 

As we continue to witness the global water crisis, organizations like Water for Good serve as a reminder of the difference that can be made through innovation, commitment, and a genuine desire to uplift communities in need. Through their work, Water for Good has not only quenched the thirst of those in CAR but has also sown the seeds of a brighter, healthier future for generations to come. 

Ensuring Future Generations Have Access to Safe and Clean Water 

Together, through collaboration and commitment to maintenance best practices, we can ensure that water remains a source of life and hope for generations to come. The success in Djembé is not an isolated incident, but a replicable model that can inspire similar initiatives worldwide. By prioritizing maintenance and community involvement, we can create sustainable water supply systems that stand the test of time. 

Water for Good’s experience in CAR demonstrates that with the right approach, the dream of universal access to safe water, sanitation, and hygiene is achievable. It’s a matter of dedication, strategic planning, and most importantly, a collective commitment to making a positive difference in the world. 

 

To give the gift of safe water to those that need it most, click HERE.