Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Sunset over a Zambian Fishing Village

The extraordinary thing about Ngwanzi village is that the villagers do not have any access to running water. The women and children have the duty of fetching water from the river as and when it is required. This task is not only onerous and backbreaking but is incredibly dangerous. Crocodiles lurk in the water and on the river banks and the simple task of fetching water can be a life threatening pursuit. This may sound over dramatic but only last month one of the elderly villagers in the village  was eaten by a crocodile.

Moreover although the life of a fisherman may look idyllic for a young man it is also a life fraught with danger. A young fisherman, and many of them are very young, will face the perils of life on the river. Hippos, as you may know, are responsible for the deaths of more people than any other animal in Africa (besides humans!) and the hippos lurk in the waters of the Zambezi. Get between a hippo and her young and your life is on the line.

Besides these dangers there is the ever present danger of malaria - Africa's biggest killer. The village lacks any form of health care facility. There is not even a simple clinic.

The people of Ngwanzi village may life a happy life for the most part but there is no doubt that access to running water, basic sanitation, electricity, basic health care and education for their children would dramatically improve their lives. The Thembinksi Foundation hopes to make a difference in the lives of these people. By providing education for children and adults, providing access to running water, basic sanitation and health care we hope to make a difference to children like the one's we met in Ngwanzi.

No comments: