Borehole machinery sits on a muddy field.

Water as Life & Light for Vulnerable Communities in Southern Togo by Agbavito Koku Selom

Water as Life & Light for Vulnerable Communities in Southern Togo

By Agbavito Koku Selom

The problem of drinking water has been a major concern for local rural populations in south-west Togo. For this reason, drinking water is becoming a commodity, as water sources such as large-diameter reservoirs and rivers are so far from human settlements. Even so, there are certain days of the week dedicated to the search for drinking water for all households. As a result, women, young people and even children in schools mobilize for these community search periods. This lack of drinking water has had a major impact on the future of children, especially young schoolchildren, who find it hard to cope with their menstrual periods because they lack water for personal hygiene, forcing them to drop out of school. In addition to the girls, the young boys are requisitioned to fetch drinking water for the household while their parents go about their chores in the fields.

Having experienced this atrocious and distressing situation, we set up a community-based organization, one of whose visions is to alleviate the problems of water shortage in the communities. In addition to this objective, the organization supports women in the management of water resources by training them in the maintenance and upkeep of drinking water supplies. They are also trained in the WASH (water, sanitation, hygiene and health) system.

Borehole machinery sits on a muddy field.

In view of the vision advocated by our organization, it went in search of external partners to accompany and financially support vulnerable communities in their efforts to obtain drinking water.

Thus, the project led by the NGO AVES and the local population saw the financial and technical support of the partner Association Chimie Solidaire from ENS Rennes to provide a borehole with the entire water extension system for the rural community.

This has helped more than 5,000 people to have access to water on a daily basis for domestic use. This is a guarantee of security and the fight against school wastage. This project has created inclusion in the community and equity for every person to have access to drinking water.

Story by Agbavito Koku Selom
Activist and Consultant, Founding Member of Association des Volontaires pour l'Environnement Sain (AVES)

Stories of Water and Change

In honor of World Water Day 2024, this online feature is dedicated to celebrating the profound connection between individuals and water, while shedding light on pressing global water issues. This diverse collection of personal narratives and photographs serves as a testament to the multifaceted relationships we share with this vital resource. As we immerse ourselves in these accounts, we are not only inspired by the depth of individual experiences but also reminded of the urgent need for collective action to safeguard our planet’s most precious resource.