Clean Water for Ntovi Primary School
Ntovi Primary School in Rukumberi, Rwanda had a problem they just couldn’t solve. Children were constantly getting sick from drinking contaminated water.
Students are taught about the importance of drinking only safe water at home. But, knowing what is best and doing what is best are two different things. Many students still drank untreated water straight from rivers and lakes.
Families whose resources were tight found it hard to always boil their drinking water. Even though they knew it was right, many families simply couldn’t afford to buy the firewood necessary to ensure that their water wouldn’t make them sick.
The school’s headmaster, Fredric Ndamage, shared that his students, “often fell sick of intestinal parasites and dysenteries. And these diseases caused them to miss classes by going to the health centre. Sometimes they even attended class with medicine inside their bags. And taking this medicine with unsafe water, was not helping them at all.”
That’s why Headmaster Ndamage was so thrilled to have a SAM2 community filter installed at his school this past year. Now, all students at Ntovi Primary School have access to clean water. The number of students falling ill from waterborne diseases has gone down and attendance has improved as a result.
“We are happy to have a SAM2 filter at our school because it enables pupils and staff to drink clean water. It is functioning well and every day we fill in water to have enough filtered water at our school,” said Headmaster Ndamage.
The gift of clean water is not something the school takes for granted. Two teachers have been trained how to operate and maintain the filter. And, a security guard watches over the filter during holidays to ensure its sustainability.
The story of Ntovi Primary School shows that knowing about safe drinking practices isn’t always enough – access to safe drinking water has to be improved as well.
Thanks to the Water Project, Ntovi Primary School now has access to clean water and is looking forward to a bright future of healthier children, increased attendance and even more future improvements.