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In spite of massive investments in Tanzania, the demand for adequate and safe water sources far outstrips their supply as the country’s population continues to grow rapidly. According to WaterAid, only 50 per cent of Tanzania’s population have access to an improved source of safe water, while 26 million are estimated to be lacking even the most basic of supplies (WaterAid). For villagers of Maganzo and Masagala in Shinyanga Region the picture is no different.

Prior to the project, their demand for water was a combined estimate of 681.3m3 per day while the water available from vendors and shallow wells was estimated to supply just 194.9 m3 per day – equivalent to 25 per cent of the total required. In both cases, the sources of drinking water were highly contaminated with animal waste and not treated or purified in any way, causing a real threat to people’s health.

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