Overlooking the terrain selected for the project
Last year was really hard.
As Covid-19 hit - in Niger and around the world - many communities feared the health repurcussions. But in RAIN's partner communities, Covid's biggest impact was economic. Markets shut down and prices skyrocketed. Families already living on the edge had to find new ways to earn enough to buy food and other basic goods.
This experience reiterated how important it is for there to be local, sustainable solutions to food production. Right now, our team is breaking ground on a new well and community garden in Betarmatas. The project will provide access to safe drinking water to the community of Betarmatas and residents of the neighboring communities of Azangala and Azamalan - reaching 1,854 Nigeriens.
This is critical because the community doesn't have access to potable water right now. The water that's available has high levels of natron (a sodium compound) - it cannot be drunk or used to water plants. As a result, the community relies on hand dug wells in the nearby quarry bed - but that water is only available seasonally and the open-mouth wells are easily contaminated by runoff. RAIN's solution will ensure year-round access to safe water.
Further, the wells will irrigate a new community garden in which local women will collaborate to grow food to feed their families and their communities. We've already worked with them to clear the land and close it off with a living hedge - to protect the plants from animals. Additionally, RAIN staff has worked with the community to establish a local maintenance committee so the wells and garden will be cared for - long beyond RAIN's involvement.
Thank you for bringing safe drinking water to Betarmatas! In the coming months, we plan to do the same in Torguit - stay tuned!
Please also consider asking a friend or loved one to join you by matching your gift - we can go so much further together than we can alone.
Don't hesitate to reach out with questions. Otherwise, we'll be sure to send you another update soon!
Local women clear land for the community garden