May 15, 2014
Gone Rural boMake (GRb) and Rosecraft, our implementing partners in Swaziland, completed the implementation of our 2012 Women Helping Women project last October; however, donors may remember that only four of the five boreholes were completed at that time. This was because the original site for the fifth borehole, which fell between the borders of the KaNdinda and Mpini Cheifdoms, posed a problem. Issues of ownership between the two communities, the borehole’s inconvenient distance from KaNdinda homesteads, and geological survey that only showed a 65% chance of finding underground water prompted GRb, with Voss Foundation’s approval, to work with the communities to find an alternative site before they proceeded with drilling.
We are pleased to announce that GRb, together with the community and the geological surveyor, located a new spot in the community of Umphakatsi earlier this year. The site selected is a weekly meeting spot for the whole community.
The community, including the chief, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), that guarantees all homesteads access to the borehole, and drilling was completed on February 21st, 2014. Installation of the hand pump will be completed once arrangements are finalized. In effort to strengthen their partnership with the government, GRb has asked the government to help install the hand pump. If they are unable to do so in a timely fashion, a contractor will be hired.
Voss Foundation will continue to provide updates on both the progress of the fifth borehole and our 2013 Women Helping Women project. The generous support of the 2013 Women Helping Women events in San Francisco and New York funded the construction of two boreholes and 45 pit latrines that will enhance access to clean water and sanitation facilities for an additional 1300 people in Swaziland, including the female artisans of Gone Rural boMake and Rosecraft. Both projects will reduce the time women spend collecting water, reduce water-borne diseases, improve personal and environmental health, and increase time for income-generating activities to create a ripple effect of change.