Serving God's People in Africa since 1868

Help Build a Water Harvesting System in Tanzania

Every time you receive a letter from me — before anything else — I want you to know how much I appreciate and deeply value your generosity and caring for the Missionaries of Africa and all those whom we serve. I want you to know that without your help, the overwhelming majority of our work would go undone. Without a doubt, you are the driving force that makes so much of what we do a reality. Your continued kindness provides clothing, medicine, pastoral care, education, housing, and — the most precious gift of all — water.


“If gold has been prized because it is the most inert element . . . , water is prized for the opposite reason . . . a necessity for life itself.”

Rebecca Solnit (American Writer)

Every time you receive a letter from me — before anything else — I want you to know how much I appreciate and deeply value your generosity and caring for the Missionaries of Africa and all those whom we serve. I want you to know that without your help, the overwhelming majority of our work would go undone. Without a doubt, you are the driving force that makes so much of what we do a reality. Your continued kindness provides clothing, medicine, pastoral care, education, housing, and — the most precious gift of all — water.

Women at the town’s well, the only reliable water source.

And once again, those who are struggling without it are asking for our help!

Not long ago, I received a a letter from Fr. Bernard Kinyisi — a priest who is working at a mission in Itigi, Tanzania, in East Africa. Itigi is located in the Singida Region of the country — an area that can experience extremely long periods without any rainfall whatsoever. As a matter of record, on average, Itigi usually receives little or no rainfall throughout June, July and even into August. During October, November and December, though, the skies open up and it pours — sometimes several times a week!

For the people of the region, they must constantly search for fresh water during the dry season!

Local man digging trenches for the water pipes that will run to the water storage tanks.

“Without adequate rainfall for such extended periods of time,” Fr. Bernard explains, “creeks, riverbeds, and even wells dry up. We must always be looking for a source of water that will be safe to drink. The source cannot be one that is shared with wildlife because of the risk of contracting diseases that the animals carry.”

A report by UNICEF states that nearly a third of the deaths of children under five who die in Tanzania are related to poor water quality. This includes nearly 20 percent of under-five deaths due to diarrhea — which is often preventable with clean water. This equates to nearly five children dying every hour. The people of Itigi desperately need clean water!

“Our hope,” Fr. Bernard continues, “is to construct a rainwater harvesting system that will allow us to collect the rain that falls during the rainy season for use during the months when there is little or no rain whatsoever.”

Men preparing a hole for the underground water tanks.

“The people within the community are willing to provide as much labor as is required to complete the project, but we need financial assistance to purchase the materials needed. The list of things we still need include cement, iron bars, water gutters, pipes, valves, a water pump, brackets and — the most expensive component — a large water storage tank. I hope that there is some way you can help us. Children are dying for lack of clean water!”

My friend, as we work to help Fr. Bernard and those in his mission have clean water, I also encourage you to help ensure that our own water supply is cared for. A couple of ways of conserving water is to replace faucets that might be leaking or dripping. You could also make sure that there’s a full load of dishes in your dishwasher before running it. Every little step we take makes a significant difference in water conservation.

I also hope that you will send a gift to help us provide clean water to those in Fr. Bernard’s mission in Tanzania — as well as others throughout Africa who might need our help. While we hope to raise at least $42,500 for this project and our other water projects in Africa, please know that any amount you send will help those in need. Once again, thank you for all that you continue to do for those who are suffering. God bless you!

 

Your Missionary Friend,

Denis P. Pringle
Director of Development