St Mary Community School, Matero, Zambia
Water is still one of the biggest problems in many Zambian communities. Most communities and schools in Zambia still drink unsafe and untreated water mostly from dug up wells or untreated boreholes. St Mary’s Mother of the Redeemer community school in Matero, which has 570 vulnerable and orphaned pupils was in the past affected by a lack of clean water and proper sanitation. There was just one water tap at the school to provide water to the pupils and 13 staff members, as well as people from nearby houses, exposing them to the risk of the deadly disease cholera.
Before the arrival of clean water, every school member was required to carry their own drinking water as there was not enough at the school for everyone. Some days pupils were asked to go back to their homes if there was no water and wait there until it returned. This affected the pupils’ academic performance and also their school calendar.
In December 2017, cholera had hit many communities in Zambia, including in the Matero compound, where St Mary’s Community school was one of the affected areas. Thanks to the financial support provided by Sandymount Parish in Dublin, Ireland in October 2017, the school was able to sink a borehole and erect a water tank.
Water tank and borehole at St Mary Community School, Matero, Zambia
This borehole has been appreciated because of the many challenges the children had faced just to access clean drinking water. Pupils are now able to go to school safe in the knowledge that they do not need to bring their own drinking water, as there is clean water available at the school. Knowing they will not be drinking unsafe water and have reliable facilities means that there is no longer a fear of cholera at the school.
We are most grateful to the people of Sandymount Parish for your generous contribution, that has enabled the school to bring safe water to the children. You have shown once again that you are our great friends and we can count on you.
Zikomo ( Thank you)
February 19th 2018