clean water changes everything.
Creating a clear solution
Through clean water systems, the Gazelle Foundation is solving a crisis and saving lives. Ownership of the water system is turned over to the local community upon completion creating a lasting impact.
Because clean water is not easily accessible in the mountainous terrain and rural sections of Burundi, 100% of Burundians in these areas are affected by water-borne illnesses which lead to typhoid, hepatitis A, schistosomiasis, bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, and death. However, in areas where we have installed clean water systems, local health centers report a dramatic decrease in waterborne illnesses and a significant improvement in overall health.
More focus on family
A clean water source also enables women to focus on other family needs instead of constantly caring for sick children. With 15-20% of children dying before the age of five, much time is spent caring for these children at home and/or traveling to local health clinics, three to four hours away.
Shorter, safer walking distance
Our clean water systems dramatically reduce the distance traveled from 3 miles to a ¼ of a mile because of the strategic placement of our public access tap stands. The reduced distance impacts the time spent fetching water. Women have more time to develop trades, take care of their home and family and children can spend more time in school. In addition, the shorter distance eliminates the dangers found in treacherous mountainous terrain or near dangerous, untreated water sources three to four hours away.
Having access to clean water also helps eliminate water-borne illnesses, allowing children to remain healthy, and attend school on a regular basis. Access to clean water along the route to school and at the school house keeps children hydrated throughout the day, and increases their ability to learn.
On average, we employ 100-110 local workers to help with the water-system construction. The workers are all residents of the community, using their earnings to purchase additional livestock, repair homes, and send their children to school. The average Burundian family lives on less than $600 annually, so our infusion of work in the area aids local Burundians in providing for their families and becoming productive members of their community.
The Gazelle Foundation’s very long-term goal is to help Burundi climb out of the bottom ten in the United Nations Human Development Index, and we feel this is possible by providing hundreds of thousands of people with access to clean water.