Fatuma lives in Kisele Village in Mkuranga District. We have just installed the solar panels on the deep well in Kisele. So this village has its first access to clean, unlimited drinking water. During the well opening, we spotted Fatuma smiling from ear to ear while sitting in the first row of women. When we asked her how she felt about the new well, she was more than ready to share her feelings.
Fatuma explained to us she used to travel 4 kilometers each way so a total of 8 kilometers a day to collect water from a nearby shallow water pit. We asked her to take us where she used to collect water prior to the well installation and she gladly guided us to the old water hole. When we arrived, we were astonished at the condition of the water she used to collect. The water was murky and quite dirty.
Fatuma told us while we walked that she had collected water from sources like the one we had just visited her entire life. When the well was first introduced in Kisele, it was the first time she had ever had clean water.
Since the women of Kisele do not have to travel such long distances anymore to access water, they have more time to dedicate to other duties. They now have a sense of self-determination and for the first time a motivation to explore options for sustainable income. Under The Village Heart Project, we encouraged Fatuma to form a women’s group with the other ladies in the village. She was very proud of being charged with this task and assembled the group quickly.
They decided on the name Matokeo Group. Matokeo translates to “Results” and Fatuma explained they chose this name because they were looking forward to a bright future and producing tangible results. With the generous donations from local donors in Tanzania, we have been able to give this group of women 10-acres of land. With this land, the women have planted ginger and turmeric. The women have devoted time and effort into this new project and are excited to harvest this produce to generate income for their families and improve their livelihoods.
With tears in her eyes, Fatuma expressed her gratitude for the new water well and farming land. She expressed that she would have never expected such a benevolent act of kindness in the village.