National Geographic : 2010 Apr
• drilling machinery could come in. Last summer their pump, installed by the river, was being motorized to push its water to a newly built res- ervoir on top of a nearby mountain. From there, gravity would pipe it down to villages on the other side of the mountain. Residents of those villages had contributed a few cents apiece to help fund the project, made concrete, and col- lected stones for the structures, and now they were digging trenches to lay pipes. From a distance they looked like a riotously colored snake: 200 people, mostly women in rainbow-striped peplum skirts and red or green T-shirts, forming a wavy line up the side of the mountain from the pump to the reservoir. Some men were helping lay fat pipes in the trench. e scene was almost festive with the taste of prog- ress. Hundreds of people had come every day for four days to spend their mornings digging. e trench was about half nished, and each day the snake moved farther up the mountain. is technically challenging, encouraging hygiene is a chal- lenge of a di erent kind. Wako Lemeta is one of two hygiene promoters whom WaterAid has trained in Foro. Lemeta, rather shy and poker- faced, stops by Binayo's house and asks her husband, Guyo Jalto, if he can check their jerry cans. Jalto leads him to the hut where they are stored, and Lemeta uncovers one and sni s. He nods approvingly; the family is using Water- Guard, a capful of which puri es a jerry can of drinking water. e government began to hand out WaterGuard at the beginning of the recent outbreak of disease. Lemeta also checks if the family has a latrine and talks to villagers about the advantages of boiling drinking water, hand washing, and bathing twice a week. Many people have embraced the new practices. Surveys say latrine use has risen from 6 to 25 percent in the area since WaterAid began work in December 2007. But it is a struggle. "When "We can do anything," sing villagers as they dig a trench for pipes near Ticho. Their efforts---with help from WaterAid--- will soon provide running water.