KOLPING SOCIETY OF TANZANIA:
How ideas of Adolph Kolping keep changing people’s lives in Tanzania
The Kolping Society of Tanzania under the persuasion and guidance of Monsignor David Kamugisha, Currently has more than 13,000 registered members in 315 Local Kolping Families established in 20 dioceses out of 36 in the country. Since its inception, Kolping has touched and changed the lives of many people from the spiritual, economic and social aspects.
One of the most outstanding project has been assisting vulnerable households in some low rainfall rural areas of Tanzania to get clean and safe water through the construction of rain water harvesting tanks with the capacity of 10,000 Lts.
These tanks have significantly helped beneficiaries to curb water shortage problem, to increase domestic income and reduce frequencies of water-borne diseases such as typhoid fever, dysentery, bilharzias, worm diseases and diarrhea. Besides, women have more time for other economic activities and the school going children are relieved of the tedious task of the daily routine of fetching water.
This is because in most rural areas there are no constructed networks of public water service by the Government; therefore people have to walk long distance between 5 to 10 kilometers to natural springs or locally made bore wells to fetch water for their domestic needs. In most communities in Tanzania, this strenuous task of fetching water is normally reserved for women and children. In this regard,School performance is affected since school going children have little time for rest and study after school hours for they have to fetch water for the household. More often than not they wake up early, fetch water and then proceed to school. The detrimental effect of this, among other things, is the significant contribution to increased poverty among people living in rural areas because much time which could be used in economic activities is spent in fetching water for domestic consumption. During dry seasons almost 50% of water sources (springs and wells) dry-up. Currently the situation is much exacerbated by climate change which has contributed to the drought period to be longer than normal.
This is testified by Happiness Gideon from Wembere, Singida region who is one of the benefiting neighbors; she says “Before this assistance we had to travel more than 6 kilometers in search of water for our own use and for small stock livestock such as chicken, ducks, goats and donkey. But after Kolping has assisted us to construct the water tank at my neighbor’s house which is fairly filled by rains are able to access clean water within 0 kilometer. Incidence of water born disease have significantly decreased, our livestock are healthy; and more so, this honey harvesting season we have noticed the 50% increase in the volume of honey harvested from our beekeeping project. The bee experts told us that it is because bees are no longer travelling a long distance in search of water.”