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Matching grant to bring clean water!

In 2011, the community of Baleveng approached Breaking Ground with a potential project. After commissioning a number of health studies to understand why so many people in their community were sick and then losing a child who drowned while fetching water in their local spring, the community had collectively decided to build a water pump and reservoir. When we met Baleveng's Development Committee they had already raised $2000. Paul and I were immediately impressed by this level of commitment.

Over the last year Breaking Ground, along with our partner organization Research Institute for Development (RIDEV), has spent time in Baleveng assessing the community's commitment, democratic process and readiness to undertake a project of this scale. The more we have learned, the more enthusiastic we have become about working with this community. 

Which is why I am thrilled to announce our partnership with One Day's Wages, which will enable Breaking Ground and the community of Baleveng, to build an electric pump and water reservoir. Breaking Ground will also work with (RIDEV) and local health centers to organize an educational program that will teach basic hygiene as well as water treatment techniques to comprehensively maximize the impact of the project. This project will not only improve the community’s health but will build the community’s confidence to envision, organize and implement future development projects. 

As we prepare to launch this project, we asked women in Baleveng for their thoughts on the project and its importance for the health and safety of the community.

Thérèse Mada, 51 - "When we began raising money to build the well three years ago, we hoped we would be able to solve the problem quickly. But we realized we would need to raise money for at least seven years. But then we met with Breaking Ground, and they brought us hope that we would be able to complete the well".




Madeline Nintidem, 74 - “In order to have water we have to walk. It takes half a day to get 20 liters of water. I used to take my young son with me to help draw the water, but since a child drowned at the well I cannot take the risk anymore. In the dry season, I have to go days without washing. The small amount of water I am able to draw from the well is just enough for drinking and cooking. If we could have water in our community it would be such a wonderful thing for us".


Mabelle Nguedia, 20 - "I often have to get up at 2 A.M. to make sure I am able to draw water for the day. Also, in the village there are many cases of disease caused by microbes in the water. It’s a huge risk for everyone, but we don’t have a choice. You need water to cook, to wash; water is life".


Josephine Djedjeu, 65 - "One year there was cholera very close to here. All the neighboring villages draw water here too, and we were too afraid, because bringing contaminated water here could cause everyone to get sick. When you think about it, it is terrifying".



To contribute to bringing healthy water to Baleveng and changing the lives of women like Mabelle and Josephine, please visit our campaign at One Day's Wages and see how you can help. For every $1 we raise, One Day's Wages will contribute $1.50. Together we can make an impact on the health of Baleveng for generations to come.