We have run a Coronavirus Awareness Campaign helping Malawians to have access to water by fixing broken boreholes, providing buckets, soap and masks, and awareness training in rural Malawi. We are continuing these projects as funding is made available.
There are only 25 ventilators available for the nineteen million people who call Malawi home. And, in rural areas of Malawi, medical facilities are most often over-subscribed, understaffed, and lacking basic equipment and medicine. Ripple Africa’s Coronavirus Awareness Campaign has been vital in reaching people living in rural areas with information about the pandemic so they know how best to keep themselves and their families safe. To date, we have reached more than 600,000 people directly, repaired broken boreholes to avoid over-crowding, and provided buckets and soap to marketplaces and other communal areas for handwashing.
Borehole Repair – $130 per repair
Malawians living in rural locations rely on boreholes to supply water for drinking, cooking, and washing. Since the coronavirus pandemic reached Malawi, the District Councils informed us that there were more than 800 broken boreholes across Nkhata Bay and Nkhotakota Districts. Often boreholes are provided but there is no money for long-term maintenance. Our fundraising campaign has enabled us to repair 440 boreholes to date but many more are still needed. Of these, 400 boreholes were funded by Foundation Eagle.
There are 2,271 boreholes across Nhkata Bay District and a similar quantity in Nkhotakota District, with approximately 20% broken. By repairing these boreholes, we will reduce overcrowding at the working ones since one borehole is used by an average of 150 people several times a day. By donating, you can directly help Malawians have access to water for drinking and, especially crucial during this time of COVID, handwashing.
Our Awareness Campaign:
- Print simple visual and locally relevant educational materials in local languages.
- Instruct Ripple Africa staff how to use these educational materials for training purposes.
- Roll out training to educate and empower the community volunteers.
- Train churches and provide leaflets to health facilities.
- Provide the District Councils in Nkhata Bay and Nkhotakota Districts with leaflets for the Area and Village Development Committees.
- Mobile awareness campaign using a vehicle and speakers.
Why Ripple Africa
Ripple Africa is perfectly situated to implement the coronavirus community education program as we have an extensive network of conservation committees spread across the districts in which we are working – a considerably larger outreach network than the District Health Department. We have over 5,000 volunteers who form our fish and forest conservation committees, support the building of our Changu Changu Moto fuel-efficient cookstoves, and assist the farmers and community groups in our tree planting and sweet potato projects. All of these volunteers have a lot of experience in delivering conservation messaging to their fellow community members and, with proper training and resources, they will be able to follow this same model in regards to educating communities about coronavirus and necessary safety precautions.