A permanent, sustainable source of drinking water that is expected to serve as many as 25,000 people in Niger is being funded in part by a US$40,000 donation from The Prem Rawat Foundation (TPRF). With the grant, TPRF is providing further aid to the nonprofit Amman Imman: Water Is Life for an effort already started with the financial assistance of the Vibrant Village Foundation.
“This project,” says TPRF President Linda Pascotto, “is particularly valuable because it will not only transform life for people living in this arid region, but will involve them in future management of the water source so that it will be self-sustaining.”
The grant will fund construction of a borehole in the village of Ebagueye in the Azawak region that will serve as a year-round source of clean water for people and livestock. Plans call for training local villagers to manage the borehole and engage in activities that will assure water and food security in the future.
Ariane Kirtley, founder and executive director of Amman Imman, says Amman Imman is the only organization that she knows of entirely dedicated to building sustainable and permanent sources of water in the Azawak, a dry plain about the size of Florida. Amman Imman is also one of the few organizations working in the Azawak region to address the food crisis and emergency humanitarian situation afflicting most countries of the Sahel.
The borehole-building team has been in Niger since mid-November. “We chose the site of Ebagueye and its surrounding communities at the beginning of December,” Kirtley says. “By the end of December, the Ebagueye borehole had been drilled. The infrastructure was finished at the beginning of February, and the community has begun drinking the potable water.”
Kirtley says it is part of her organization’s overall goal to eventually create an “Oases of Life” across the vast Azawak, starting with drilling permanent and sustainable water sources, not only for its 500,000 inhabitants, but also for the refugees that seek shelter on its vast plains, including those that fled Libya last year, and those fleeing Mali today.
“We at Amman Imman are most grateful for the collaboration that has developed between our organization, TPRF and the Vibrant Village Foundation,” says Kirtley.
The Prem Rawat Foundation (TPRF) promotes Prem Rawat’s message of peace and his vision of addressing fundamental human needs so that people everywhere can live with dignity, peace and prosperity. For more information, visit: www.tprf.org.