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Water harvesting brings hope to communities

THE current rains have come as a temporary relief to thousands of Chitungwiza households facing perennial water shortages due to erratic supplies.

Report By Tawanda Marwizi

Residents in the town have now resorted to harvesting water from rooftops under a project funded by USAid.

Under the Rooftop Rainwater Harvest (RWR) scheme, tanks have been erected in various areas in the town for harvesting of rain water.

Residents who spoke to Standardcommunity said they had been reduced to water “scavengers” due to failure by the local authority to provide water services.

They said the project had come as a temporary relief as they were no longer travelling long distances of up to five kilometres in search of clean water. 

“The water that is collected into my [2 500-litre] tank is enough to cover all my worries,” said Petros Mapuranga, one of the beneficiaries of the programme.

Although the programme is seasonal, thousands of households were already using the harvested water for domestic use.

Councillor for ward 15 in Chitungwiza, Idah Mafunga said the project had temporarily decongested the available boreholes.

“Most borehole were running dry due to the heavy usage. This project will improve the livelihoods of people although it will benefit them for a short period,” she said.

The Rooftop Rainwater Harvest was established by a non-governmental organisation, International Relief and Development in partnership with USAid to assist needy people with clean and safe water. 

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