Community Collaborates to achieve Water Rights

Francisca Romero knew her community’s water well was on the verge of collapse. Everybody in Los Ébanos, a 42-family community in Chichigalpa, Nicaragua, was very aware of the water scarcity they
were facing. Well past its useful life, the well no longer provided nearly enough water.

Though the municipality was sending in a water tanker to provide families with one barrel at a time, it wasn’t enough. And Francisca, the recently reelected president of the Los Ébanos Community Water Committee, became committed to overcoming the crisis. Thanks to her tenacious efforts, she advocated
for her community with the Water Round Table – an initiative of our Technology for Sustainable Water Resource Governance Project whereby the municipality, Change for Children’s project partner (SIMAS), community water committees, and other NGOs working in the area meet to a coordinate and prioritize clean water response in the region. Upon a visit to Los Ébanos, the group joined forces to invest in a complete system.

The new water system, complete with well, water tower and tank, electric pump, distribution pipes, and water meters, included investment from the municipality and the commitment of community members. The community’s commitment included purchasing the land required for the infrastructure, in addition to a significant investment of sweat equity to prepare the trenching for the network of pipes to each home.

“Despite setbacks along the way, we managed to overcome,” relates Francisca of the families who worked tirelessly from the beginning of the project to the end – culminating in an August 26, 2020
inauguration day celebrated with great joy! “We are grateful for the investments made by all the parties involved. Organizations that, in our community, have not only made an economic contribution, but have also contributed their time spent visiting us and training us for the proper functioning of the system.”

In The Field Central America and the Caribbean Nicaragua Water