A solar-powered mechanised water system with the capacity to supply about 25,000 litres of water daily has been commissioned for the people of Denugu, a farming community in the Garu District of the Upper East Region.
The facility, with the capacity to supply water to over 10,000 people, has been connected to the Denugu Health Centre with handwashing machines installed in all the wards, departments, and vantage points.
Additionally, the integrated water system with distribution lines of 700 metres, reaches out to two other places, the Denugu Market and Basic School where taps are connected for members of the community and its environs, and students to easily fetch water.
It was provided by WaterAid Ghana, water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) focused organisation as part of its WASH for Healthcare Facilities Programme with support from Guinness Ghana Breweries Limited on its water for life agenda.
Mrs Kate Kumi, the Acting Country Director, WaterAid Ghana, said plans had been advanced to soon provide toilet facilities and incinerators to the Denugu Health Centre to ensure proper sanitation practices.
Mrs Kumi said despite the significant role clean water played in achieving quality healthcare delivery, research had shown that more than 54 per cent of healthcare facilities in Sub-Saharan Africa did not have clean and safe water on site.
She said the situation was worse in rural health facilities in Ghana and it threatened the country’s efforts to achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly goal three, which was about access to quality healthcare for all and goal six, putting emphasis on access to water, sanitation and hygiene by 2030.
The Acting Country Director noted that strategic investment was therefore needed in the area of WASH services and urged the various Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies to prioritise WASH issues and make the necessary budgetary allocation towards implementation.
She called for synergy among stakeholders in the delivery of WASH services to achieve maximum results
“To enable us to deliver a complete project, we had to collaborate with the Australia Mission in Ghana, Zochonis from the UK and we had to rely on WaterAid Ghana’s unrestricted fund to provide the sanitation services to complement the water facilities that Guinness Ghana is supporting us with.
“I will, therefore, like to urge the Assembly to prioritise the scale-up of our intervention, being intentional and marketing your WASH plans to help realise this. We expect that this will be replicated in other communities within the district to improve the lives of all especially women and children,” she added.
Madam Helene Weesie, the Managing Director, Guinness Ghana Breweries Limited, said the facility was the second her outfit had supported to install in the district and noted that it was part of Guinness Ghana’s project to give back to the farming community for producing sorghum to feed its industrial needs yearly.
She said sustainable water sources were key to developing communities and building their resilience and there was a need to intervene in addressing the water crisis in the community.
She asked the community members to properly maintain the facility to make it last.
Mr Osman Musah, the Garu District Chief Executive, lauded WaterAid Ghana and its partners for supporting the district over years to improve upon access to WASH services and noted that the Assembly would build on their interventions to benefit many communities.