For a cup of water

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New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga Territory helps villages in Africa.

For rural women in Malawi and Tanzania the luxury of convenient water is something they could never imagine. Most begin their day before sunrise, and acquiring a daily supply of water—20 liters—requires spending up to half the day walking. The task can involve danger—both from wild animals and attacks by men—so they tend to walk in groups. Once home, they must boil the dirty water before it can be used for drinking or cooking.

Through a partnership now in its third year, The Salvation Army has been helping bring clean water to these people.

In 2004, the late Major Ian Frazer visited Malawi and Tanzania on behalf of the New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga Territory and saw firsthand the hardship caused by the lack of a yearlong supply of water. Frazier listened as villagers described their challenges, and they discussed with him specific needs, including water wells, literacy classes (particularly for women), and teaching on sanitation, nutrition and health. Another growing problem was HIV/AIDS and the resulting number of orphaned children in the villages.

As a result of Frazier’s visit, a three-year partnership between the New Zealand government (NZAID), The Salvation Army in New Zealand, and The Salvation Army in Malawi and Tanzania began.

In 10 rural communities in southern and central Malawi and five in northern Tanzania, the partnership got to work digging wells, training water management committees, and providing classes in sanitation, nutrition and literacy. HIV/AIDS prevention classes were held, and home-based care offered to HIV/AIDS sufferers. They also introduced income-generating gardening.

Overseas Development Officer Major Vyvyenne Noakes traveled to Tanzania in early October to fulfill part of The Salvation Army’s reporting requirements to the New Zealand government. She will visit projects in the Kilimanjaro, Muanza and Mara regions in the north of the country and then visit Malawi to assess projects in the south of the country.

From The Salvation Army’s New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga Territory website

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