Skip to Main Content

Central Highlands Foundation Water Projects: Bob Gausman (Bodditti,1970-72) and Dwight Sullivan (Dodola, 1970-72)

Photo courtesy of Bob Gausman

Central Highlands Foundation is currently working on 2 water projects this year near the town of Soddo in the Walaitta region of southern Ethiopia approximately 200 miles south of Addis.  There are numerous mountain springs scattered throughout the highland areas of the country.  In order to allow women and children access to the water, who generally are the ones responsible for gathering it, a pond is usually dug at the mouth of the spring and the water then forms into a pool so that the 5 gallon containers which they carry can be filled.  Unfortunately, these pools quickly become contaminated both from seasonal runoff and because livestock are allowed to drink from the springs. 

The most efficient way to remedy this situation is to protect the spring by building a concrete cap over it.  Then a masonry reservoir is constructed nearby to collect the water.  From this reservoir water distribution points are then built to provide clean water to the local people.  These systems are cost effective and by not having any moving parts there is no need for expensive repairs nor constant maintenance.  When these projects are completed later this year nearly 10,000 people will have access to clean water.  

Before and after construction of the spring improvement projects.