28/01/21Global Issues 

Blog: Voices on water from Tanzania

Desperate prayers seem the only solution for water in Tanzania


The total reliance on unpredictable and inconsistent rain to provide people with water in Tanzania is laid bare in a new set of new reports by civil society media organisation MACS.


The reports show the desperate situations rural communities suffer when they are let down so brutally not only by nature, but also by those that have the capability to help them.


Somehow, there seem to be no solutions being considered and put into place for these people. Nothing imaginative or remotely sustainable. Nothing that recognises that climate change is making things even worse for these people. Nothing that gives these people even a crumb of hope.


Water is a human right. But many of these people cannot afford to buy water from tanks, which will be of dubious quality anyway. So many are left to hope that the wells have not dried up and the water that they can recover is even barely usable.


The phrase ‘water is life’ is repeated often by us all in the sector – but in Tanzania and many other places around the world, those words really mean something. Water really is a life or death matter.


These reports from rural communities, collected by the NGO Media for Community Empowerment (MACS) are a shocking reminder of the challenge the international water sector faces.  These are the people behind the statistics about SDG6 not being on track. And these are the people that Civil Society Organisations have been shouting about for years, but not being listened to.


AquaFed recently joined forces with NGO MACS to ensure Tanzanian communities are represented in a landmark UN report on water, which will synthesise opinions and information from people from around the world about the ‘value of water’ - the theme of World Water Day on 22 March.


We will make sure that the messages from these communities in Tanzania will be heard at the highest levels at the UN. But that is just the start. This is about getting solutions to these communities through action. We want to hear from CSOs, private sector and any other organisations who are already working in Tanzania and who have ideas for sustainable solutions.


Is anyone working on water reuse schemes for communities like these? Or even more innovative ideas? If so, please get in touch with us: neil.dhot@aquafed.org


Finally, our huge thanks to Mohammed Hammie and Mariam Matundu from MACS for their tireless work and dedication to amplify the voices of rural communities in Tanzania.