American healthcare, a non-profit, United Vessels of Love Foundation (U-VOL), has built a solar-powered borehole in Ojegbe community of Obi Local Government Area (LGA) of Benue State for 1,500 people.
In a statement, signed by the Foundation’s Public Relations Unit and sent to the News Agency of Nigeria on Wednesday in Abuja, Ms Faith Adole, Founder of U-VOL, said that the clean water project is powered by public support, donations, and a local project management team.
Adole, who spoke during the commissioning of the solar-powered borehole, is a trained Nurse and an experienced Global Health Leader, currently pursuing her Doctoral studies at The Johns Hopkins University in the US.
Adole said that the water project was carried out due to the lack of potable driving water in Ojegbe community which was a huge challenge during the COVID-19 lockdown in 2020.
She added because of the lockdown and the lack of clean water in the area, the people of Ojegbe experienced a strange illness which claimed over 270 lives and left hundreds ill.
According to her, “I am pleased to announce the successful completion of a solar-powered borehole located in the Ojegbe community of Obi LGA in Benue State.
“Thanks to the borehole located next to Ojegbe Primary School, 1,500 people will now have access to clean drinking water.
“Not too long ago, in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic-induced economic uncertainty, residents had to confront the harsh reality of no access to clean drinkable water.
“A strange water illness claimed over 270 lives and affected hundreds more within the same local government area,” she said.
Adole further added that aside from U-VOL’s borehole intervention, a swift follow up on medical mission in the same Obi community say more than 600 patients treated by a team of medical volunteers.
At the commissioning, Ms Juliet Obahi, a resident of Ojegbe, said that before the borehole, residents frequented a local stream within the village, called Orowu.
“The Orowu dries up seasonally and gets contaminated easily during the rainy season as the same water source is used for multiple purpose.
“Our children will go for long hours and fetch water, and when they bring it back home and drink it, they start purging,” she said.
NAN reports that U-VOL plans to continue expanding its newly-launched Water Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) programme to empower vulnerable rural communities throughout various parts of Nigeria.
According to sources close to U-VOL, there are hopes to assist both governmental and other NGO efforts to eradicate open defecation.
It will also provide and promote health education activities on hygiene and sanitation, and promote the construction of public toilet facilities.