Ncell, one of the leading telecom operators have been putting up its engagement in bettering the lives of people through CSR programs. Along with education, health; now it has invested in the initiative of drinking water.It has supported three communities of Syanja district to access water through clean water pumping technology, helping households save time they otherwise use in fetching water and utilizing the same for commercial farming, thereby contributing to raising household incomes.
The project has strengthened the livelihoods of 75 families of Eladi, Dipka and Thuladi villages of Syanja district by enabling them to access water for multiple purposes in the village itself and providing households with opportunities to make extra income by growing high-value vegetables using drip irrigation. Through this project, Ncell has helped each community to install a Hydraulic Ram Pump (Hydram) at the base of the hill, build storage tanks on the hilltops and develop water distribution channels and tap stands to provide water directly to the whole community. The Hydram pump is a clean energy technology that uses the kinetic energy of falling water from a stream or river to lift part of the supply flow to a greater height.
Before the implementation of this project, all three communities had been facing problems due to the lack of a reliable water source, resulting in high dependency on subsistence agriculture, poor nutrition and sanitation. Women had little opportunities and incentives to engage in productive income generating activities. Now, the 75 households and a primary school, representing a total of 420 individuals, are using pumped water to grow high-value vegetable crops using drip irrigation, irrigate fruit trees, provide water for livestock, and for domestic usage like sanitation.
It is for the first time a remote monitoring system using SIM metering technology has been implemented to measure the distribution of water for domestic and irrigation needs. The use of SIM card enables communities to maintain data of water supply and consumption at their end. They can monitor water uses for each household and thereby contribute fees according to the water usage. Payments are collected by the community and are used for the operation and maintenance of the system.
Ncell launched this initiative in 2014 under the Water for Agricultural Livelihood Project. The project was implemented in partnership with Renewable World – an INGO with expertise in clean energy, Center for Rural Technology – technical partners and Andhikhola Community Development Center – a local project implementor.