A Ripple of Impact
Claudine Murekatete has always been an active member of her church in Rwanda’s Mbuye village. For years, she had dedicated herself to various church activities, serving as a leader and supporting fellow members in need. However, the church faced a significant challenge that affected its cleanliness and hygiene practices. That ultimately trickled down to the well-being and development of its congregation: a lack of access to clean water.
Located far from Mbuye’s nearby lake, Claudine’s church had difficulty obtaining water for cleaning and personal hygiene. Additionally, purchasing filtered water was expensive, and the church could not afford it regularly. As a result, church volunteers could not clean as often as necessary. Hand-washing practices were not always possible before and after services.
In the midst of these health and sanitation challenges, which were compounded by ongoing COVID-19 concerns, Claudine was grateful to learn that her church had been selected to receive a rainwater harvesting system, which collects and dispenses clean rainwater in large quantities.
The rainwater harvest system was a game-changer for the church.
With the system, Claudine and her colleagues could collect and store rainwater. This is used to take needed precautionary measures on behalf of their most vulnerable congregation members. The system also allowed the church to provide water to neighboring community members who faced similar water scarcity challenges.
Right away, Claudine recognized the far-reaching impact of the rainwater harvest system on her church and its surrounding community.
“We were able to save money that we previously spent on buying water and use it for other church activities, including reaching out to those in need,” she says.
The rainwater harvest system has also brought a sense of pride and joy to the members of Claudine’s church. With sufficient water, they have been able to maintain clean facilities and host events that they could not before. The church is now an even more active hub of activity in Mbuye, serving not just its members but also their neighbors and friends. As a result, Claudine sees the rainwater harvest system as more than just a water system. Instead, it is a symbol of progress and hope for her church and the Mbuye community. It demonstrates – like a drop of water rippling out across the surface of a lake – the outsize impact that something as simple as a water filter can have on real lives.