Himakumari Poudel, a resident of Dhorpatan Municipality-5 Chaura, is finally liberated from tiresome drudgery of fetching water from a far ravine – an activity that costed her a couple hours of productive time on a daily basis. She remained exasperated from the daily act of fetching water. “Our children were not able to go school on time because I had to make several trips to the water source each morning and the lunch was delayed”, Himakumari adds, “now the water is at our doorstep, life has become easy.”
With NEWAH and charity: water’s support, Chaura drinking water and sanitation project was completed last year. The project brings water from Thulo Padhero, a spring water source, using solar lifting technology. The water is lifted to a height of 372 meters and distributed to 40 households of the community. A water meter is connected to each tap and the users pay a monthly tariff based on quantity of water consumed.
Reaching Chakra takes a two-hour hike from Burtibang – the closest town to the community. It is home to 21 low-caste Dalit families and 19 upper caste and tribal families. Before the project, families without a steady income source were forced to prepare makeshift houses near to a water source and rear livestock, pigs and poultry. Some families even migrated to a new community/village. “We were about to vanish in the absence of water, now the hope has reanimated”, Sirilal BK, a Dalit resident says “absenteeism is no more. Our children are able to go school on time, and haven’t missed classes since the water has come at our doorstep.” Sirilal revealed that before the project, many children, particularly young girls, were kept out of school in order to fetch water for the family. She adds “for so long the community yearned for water, and this project has made the dream a reality. I’m very happy that my children are going school and will grow up to become an educated citizen of the country.”