By Solister Mogha
Zomba District Council Director of Administration (DOA), Redgson Mkolombwe, has commended Malawi Red-Cross Society (MRCS) for implementing two life-changing projects of disaster preparedness in South African countries and Philip Morris Initiative.
Through the projects implemented in Traditional Authority (TA) Mwambo, MRCS has been able to drill five boreholes, build 33 houses for the vulnerable especially those affected by floods and heavy rains.
MRCS has also trained communities on early warning systems and provided them with rain gauges to assess water levels in Phalombe River which goes through Zomba and Phalombe districts.
Speaking during an inspection tour of the projects, Mkolombwe said he was impressed to see the positive impact the projects were making on the community.
“Projects must always bring change to the community it serves. I am quite impressed to see the significant changes that the two projects are making on people of T/A Mwambo.
“Access to potable water is one of government’s priorities and seeing MRCS drilling boreholes in such communities is quite a notable contribution towards government’s efforts,” said Nkolombwe.
Mkolombwe also described construction of community houses and provision of rain gauges as major contribution to the council.
Under the intervention, MRCS has also constructed latrines in some schools used as evacuation centre during disasters such as floods.
MRCS Zomba District Coordinator, Owen Kanongodza said the organization’s goal and vision is to uplift the life of rural communities.
Kanongodza said through the project, many lives have been touched and there is great improvement in as far as access to clean and safe water is concerned.
“The society also provided training on first aid and other trainings aimed at improving the life of communities. It is also important to mention that the river gauges came as a result of floods which occurred in 2015 in the area that swept houses and properties away,” he said.
Group Village Head Chaweza, one of the beneficiaries of the projects, said before the project started, people were drawing water from unprotected water bodies.
He said the unsafe water sources put them at a risk of contracting waterborne diseases like cholera.
Chaweza also said before the rain gauges were installed in the river, it was hard to know when people should run upland in readiness for the impending floods.
“MRCS has completely changed our life; there are alot of improvements that we can cite as results of the projects but all we can say is, thank you,” he said.
Started in 2017, the two projects are now in their last phase.