Rain Water Harvesting System: “Access to water and storage”

A-PAD SL carried out an extensive survey in areas where shortage of pure, clean, drinking water is an acute problem. The point of entry for the Rain Water Harvesting Tank program was the series of Community Based Disaster Risk Reduction (CBDRR) Workshops held, mainly in the Northern Parts of Sri Lanka. The CBDRR Workshops were mostly focused on Water Management, Water Contamination, Waste Management etc. The views obtained from the community in this process indicated, among other things, that the lack of water and the lack of water storage facilities were fundamental issues they were faced with. It was also revealed to us that people walked long distances to obtain little quantities of water which had to be preserved in small containers available to them in their homes. Furthermore water available in the dug-wells was mostly of high salinity and therefore not suitable for drinking. Another notable factor was that it was the women and children who had to trudge long distances, even through unsafe jungle areas or lonely paths, in search of water. As a direct result of this situation, children’s school attendance was affected as well as the women’s capacity to engage in income generation activities or attend to other household chores.

Based on the responses, one tank was installed as the pilot model in Kayts (Jaffna District). This pilot operation helped us to ascertain the usefulness and the workings of the tank, and upon satisfactory progress, decided to go in for 85 more tanks within a span of two years.

An approximate of 1000 people have benefitted from this initiative as families share the water with neighboring houses that do not such facilities.

“I have a dug well at home but no matter how much we try to dig in to the well due to this drought we do not get water. Before this tank, we used to fill water into 20 litre buckets but that’s barely sufficient for a day. With this tank we can use water for a month while using it not only for drinking but for cooking purposes also. I am a father of 5 children and it’s not easy to manage a household with many children. Water is a big problem for us when it concerns the sanitation of kids and their education.” – Beneficiary from Melinchimunai

“It is a very useful concept to provide us tanks of this nature. During very hot weather. I have an infant and its convenient for me to bath him and also for cooking and drinking. You have brought light and smiles into our lives. We are very happy now. When we didn’t have this tank, life was very difficult. The water that we get from this tank is fresh and cooling at the same time. Thank you again.” – Beneficiary from Melinchimunai

“Before we received this system, we had to walk many Kilometers to get some water or we had to collect sufficient money to buy water off the bowsers. But blessings to you and your organization, we now have a long term solution for our water problems.”  – Beneficiary from Analaithivu

“Before we received this system, we had to walk many Kilometers to get some water or we had to collect sufficient money to buy water off the bowsers. But blessings to you and your organization, we now have a long term solution for our water problems.”  – Beneficiary from Analaithivu

“Firstly, I would like to thank you for providing us with a Rain Water Harvesting Tank. We gain many benefits because of this installation. Though it costs us money to fill it up from the bowser, we do so as there is a scarcity of pure drinking water. Before this system was given, we faced many struggles. Even if there was water available in the bowsers, we did not have a proper way to store the water. But now if we fill it once, we can use this water for our family and also share it with neighbors for nearly a month” – Beneficiary from Melinchimunai