During 2014 it became apparent that the provision of clean, reliable water was becoming a major concern in Tabora Region. At the suggestion of FUM Secretary Rod Smith we started a Focus on Water initiative.
With 2014 being the 50th year of FUM's presence in the region we launched the Jubilee Appeal in 2015 to raise £50,000 specifically for water projects.
The appeal was successful and closed at the end of 2017 having raised over £50,000.
As well as having a general appeal for donations our Fundraising Officer Isabel Heycock initiated a number of sponsored activities.
Sponsored Walks in south Devon,
organised by Julie Overnell
2015, 2016 & 2017
Sponsored Walks across Sussex South Downs, organised by Isabel Heycock,
2015, 2016 & 2017
London Marathon charity entry
2017 run by Tom Davies (grandson of FUM co-founder John Gillett)
Swim Serpentine charity event 2017
swum by Nicky Vinall and
Cranbrook Tanzania Project Reunion Dinner organised by
Jo Taylor, 2017
These events raised over £38,000 towards the £50,000 target.
Separate cash donations took the total raised to over £51,000
Jubilee water projects
The original plan was to fund the drilling of deep boreholes, each costing around £12,000, at the four most vulnerable of FUM's centres. Previously, drilling a borehole had a good chance of success and was the most reliable source of drinking quality water.
It soon became apparent that the situation had changed. The fall in the underground water table meant that in some areas a borehole had only a 10% chance of success. Local water engineers advised that a more flexible approach should be used to provide water, dependent on the local situations.
Semembela deep borehole
Previously villagers had to walk 2 km for water or buy it from local entrepreneurs. FUM commissioned a hydrological survey to identify the most favourable site for a test drilling and this proved successful. The water was deemed potable by the government laboratory so full drilling went ahead. The well was capped, fitted with a handpump and run-off surround so villagers now have ready access to good quality water for free. Supply was maintained even through the drought of 2017.
Mbooga rainwater harvesting
Geological conditions meant there was little chance of a borehole being successful so rainwater harvesting was the preferred option. Rainwater from the extensive roof of the adjacent primary school is collected and stored in a large concrete tank. Rocky ground meant that it had to be an above-ground tank. The project was completed in October 2017 just in time for the rains.
The optimum solution here was to take advantage of a new feed to the Urambo Town mains water supply by installing a 1 km connection pipe to it. A water meter monitors the college usage but the Principal Mr Nestory said it is affordable because student numbers are strong.
The improvement also enables the college vegetable garden to be fully used to improve the students' diet.
Recently the flow has been hampered by a faulty pump in the town supply but this is expected to be temporary.
As with Urambo FDC the optimum solution was to connect the college to the town's improved mains supply via a water meter. Water is more expensive in this drier area so some additional rainwater harvesting capacity is linked to their existing storage tank. This helps reduce the charges for the mains water.
Here a deep borehole had been drilled in 2008, originally with a handpump fitted. Later, when mains electricity reached the FDC, a submersible electric pump was fitted .
After several years the growing effect of climate change resulted in failure of the pump and it was replaced, this time with dry-running protection! It proved its worth in the severe drought of 2017 with the pump coming through undamaged.
The FDC now delivers free water to Mwanhala clinic about 1km away.
Nyasa clinic rainwater harvesting
The solution here was to harvest rainwater from the extensive clinic roof and store it in a large, 96,000 litre underground tank. Where the ground is suitable these are cheaper than an over-ground type. A solar powered pump lifts water as needed to a small above-ground plastic SIM tank for ready access by users.
The tank was completed in March 2018 and good rains meant that by May the tank was 75% full though delivery of the solar pump was still awaited. This system replaces the need to buy water brought from a bizarre hilltop well 1 km away.
Mwasala deep borehole
This project was generously paid for by our colleagues at Friends of Nzega (FON) in support of the FUM Jubilee initiative.
The drilling and construction in 2016 was supervised by FUM's Clerk of Works Venance Gomegwa (in picture).
The well gave a good supply of water all through the drought of 2017.
The clinic will benefit greatly after its refurbishment is complete.
Maboha village and clinic proposal
The balance of the Jubilee Appeal fund will be used to help this remote site in Kaliua District. Currently water for the clinic has to be bought. The closest reliable sources are nearly 2km away, from Lake Sagara or a dangerous open well.
FUM's water consultants, together with the Kaliua District Water Engineer are working on an ambitious plan for a solar powered pumping system to supply water to the village and the clinic. The estimated cost of £15,000 will be shared equally between FUM and Kaliua District.