To contribute to the global aim of attaining water for all by 2023, Nestlé and the International Federation of Red Cross (IFRC) have sunk three boreholes for the Kofi Pare Community to provide potable water to the inhabitants.
The Community, which has a population of about 2000, is located in the Ayensuano District of the Eastern Region, producing sugarcane, plantain and cocoa.
Nana Opare Amaadi, the Guantuahene of Kofi Pare, speaking at a durbar to handover the boreholes, commended Nestlé and the IFRC/Red Crescent Societies for the support.
He said it was timely because the River Ayensu, the only source of water for the more than 2000 residents, was no more wholesome due to activities of miners upstream.
“Now our river is heavily polluted to extend that people get sick after drinking. This problem is compounded by open defecation, which is happening as a result of the collapse of the only toilet facility some eight years ago,” he said.
“We have heard that they want to build a new toilet but aside the sand and chippings, which have been deposited for over two years, nothing is happening. Diarrhoea is a common disease in this town. Some of the children who swim in the river contract diseases such as bilharzia.”
Nana Amaadi stated that children and women used to trek for about one and a half miles to fetch water every morning and that disrupted the education of the children.
Ms Philomena Tan, the Managing Director of Nestlé Ghana, commended the partnership with IFRC and called on other institutions to join forces to send Water Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) services to deprived communities.
“Water is life and collective effort is required to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goal6 – Clean Water and Sanitation. We at Nestlé Ghana will continue to help bridge the WASH gap here through partnerships such as this to complement efforts of the Government,” she said.
Ms Tan recalled that Nestlé’s partnership with the IFRC in Ghana dates back to 2015 and had helped improve access to sustainable WASH services for more than 76,300 people living in 50 communities in the rural Ashanti and Eastern regions by providing over 40 water points and 110 toilet facilities.
Mr Abel Augustinio, the WASH Delegate of IFRC, said Nestlé and IFRC’s Global Water and Sanitation Initiative sought to reach 30 million people across the globe by 2030.
Locally, he said, the target was to provide 600,000 local communities with free access to water, sanitation or hygiene projects around its production sites and main agricultural supply chains by 2020 as part of contributing to the Sustainable Development Gaols.