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Paul D. Coverdell World Wise Schools

Paul D. Coverdell World Wise Schools

Health and Nutrition: Lesotho

Water in Africa

Africa, Lesotho


by Peter Yurich, Ha Khayensti, Lesotho

The water from the spring box is fine, but water from the water hole is contaminated by animals. People generally drink tea and home brew.

by MaryAnn Camp, Ha Rantubu, Lesotho

I worked at a clinic at my first village and I saw several dehydrated infants come to the clinic. Many mothers were young and first-time mothers. We had to instruct them on how to make the oral rehydration formula and emphasize the importance of using boiled water and not just well water for their children when making the formula.

I doubt that the water in my present village has been tested. I am in the process of doing that for two reasons:

1. health reasons
2. fluoridation.

I'm doing an oral health clinic soon in my village and the dentist in Maseru has informed me that many areas in Lesotho have too much fluoride.

by Claire Hilger, Christ the King Mission, Qacha's Nek, Lesotho

The drinking water here is fresh; it comes straight from the spring to my house. The sisters pump the water each night. Some families draw their water at night to avoid the lines and because they know no cattle will be crossing upstream.

by Cynthia Holahan, Ha Nkoka, Thaba-Tseka District, Lesotho

For the most part I'd say our water is fresh. People do, however, get sick occasionally and claim it is because of the bugs in the water. As I said, I boil the water I drink. There is nothing done, that I am aware of, to ensure the quality of the drinking water. During the dry season, when the water is stagnant and at a temperature at which bacteria breed, people seem to expect to get diarrhea or stomach problems. They simply wait for the rains to come again.

by Becki Krieg, Qacha's Nek, Lesotho

Water in the United States is treated to add things we need and take out the things that could make us sick. Since I grew up in the United States, this is the kind of water my body is used to. But my water in Lesotho comes just as it is: Nothing is added and nothing is taken out. The people of Lesotho grew up with this kind of water. Their bodies are used to it. Mine is not. What will not make a person in Lesotho sick will make me sick. So I boil all the water I use for drinking or cooking. Boiled water is much healthier, even for people in Lesotho. However, boiling water takes time, and it uses a lot of fuel. Fuel, either gas or kerosene, is not easily available to most people here. Plus, it is expensive. So most people here will not use their fuel to boil their water.

by Amy Bratsch, Ha Thamere-Qutin-Mt.Moorosi, Lesotho

The water seems fresh and clean coming from the tap. The people of the village do not boil their water. They do not become ill from drinking fresh tap water. The people rinse their water buckets before filling them. Most containers have lids, and appear to be clean.

by JeanMarie Mitchell, Ha Tebelo, Lesotho

The drinking water in Ha Tabelo is as fresh as it can be! The well is enclosed with concrete and is locked up every night. Only after a heavy rain it is dirty and should it be boiled.

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