Message of Appreciation from Masekelantaba Community



Water is a driver for economic development and is essential for human survival. The importance of the precious resource has been emphasized over the years. According to the constitution of Zimbabwe amendment number 20, article 77, every person has the right to safe, clean and portable water. Similarly Sustainable Development Goal number six aims at ensuring access to water and sanitation for all.

In spite of such strong declarations by government that every person has the right to water, there existed a gap in adequate access to clean and safe water supplies in ward 5 Spitzkop North, for  our Masekelantaba community in particular. The area is not connected to   reticulated water system so residents had challenges in access of nearby water services, exacerbated by the fact that the area is not serviced at all by government. The water kiosk, ushered in by UNICEF through Africa AHEAD has done so much to alleviate the water woes that once existed in the ward.

Before Africa AHEAD brought in this service, the sources of water were about 1-1.5 km away that the Njanji borehole and the community taps installed by council which operate through tokens system. However due to water and electricity challenges faced nationwide, water rationing came in. The system of water rationing meant that the sole provider of water was Njanji borehole which is a distance away, compared to the Water Kiosk that is now serving the Masekelantaba community.

We can now access water in adequate quantities unlike before when we could only take a  small  quantities due to the distance to Njanji borehole. Also the Kiosk does not rely on a single tap hence less time is spent on fetching water.This project offers convenience to both monthly earners and the self-employed. 

The kiosk has improved the access to water in this community and has done a lot to promote local development and hygiene promotion within the ward. The community has been living vulnerably to waterborne diseases such as cholera, typhoid among others. However,  unpredictably by the Grace of God, the community was saved by the coming in of the Water Kiosk as it started functioning just a month before the deadly pandemic Covid 19 hit this country. Water has been plenty during this period since the sources of water were never dry. Whilst we practice social distance and other precautions, the resident also have enough water for hygiene improvement, during this period of Covid 19 prevention.

This will be a gate opener to even promote urban resilience programmes to the volunteers and the community in general. The involvement of Njanji and Masekelantaba volunteers within this ward in operating and maintaining the outlook of the Kiosk has brought in social cohesion which is a strong pillar for any community to escalate development and self-reliance. In recognition of its significance to any human being, I became part of the volunteers from Masekelantaba residents in maintaining the outlook  of the Kiosk.

In addition, the site is aesthetically pleasing, with landscaping which in turn will grow to tempt passersby or visitors to pose for photos as they visit the site. This may in turn become and income generating project which may, in a way, promote community development and prestige.

Much gratitude and appreciation to UNICEF, the funder of Africa AHEAD which came to our rescue on our water woes. A huge applause to Africa AHEAD for such an achievement, which the community will always look back at and remember the good work exhibited, as an Organisation. We also recognise the role played by the Municipality of Gwanda for welcoming the project to reach us. The Water Kiosk is indeed a new dawn especially to Masekelantaba and ward 5 as a whole.