Water, Sanitation and Hygiene in Buikwe, Uganda

Water, Sanitation and Hygiene in Buikwe, Uganda

Clean water and sanitation are necessities for life.

Despite this, an estimated 844 million people around the world still do not have a source of safe water near their homes and a further 2.3 billion people do not have access to a toilet.

Unsafe water and poor sanitation are some of the largest barriers to eradicating extreme poverty.

Where we are working in Buikwe, Uganda, 50% of the population (430,000) do not have access to clean water and 40% of families do not have access to a toilet.

This can lead to some difficult choices to make. Should families spend hours each day walking, collecting and carrying water from far away sources for clean water? A family will need about 20litres per person for drinking, washing, cleaning and cooking. Or should they be tempted by a water source nearer to home that isn’t safe and risk catching dangerous diseases?

International Needs WASH Water Project.

In 2016 we began a pilot programme in Buikwe to support families with water, sanitation and hygiene initiatives. Through the pilot programme we supported over 9,000 people with improved access to safe water, built 34 toilets, and reached over 1,262 children with hygiene and sanitation education in schools.

Through the Water Project, Jessica and her two grandsons have been supported with new toilets at their home. Read their story of hope on our blog.

Transformation for 12 villages

In 2018 we began a scaled-up Water Programme working with 12 villages in Najjembe Sub-County and Buikwe Town Council (a total population of 15,979 people).  Over the next 3 years (2018-2020), we are working to provide these 12 villages with a holistic water support package, tailor-made to the needs of families and the community. This will provide:

  • New borehole wells and pumps
  • Rehabilitating damaged water sources
  • Building toilets and other sanitation facilities with families and schools
  • Hygiene and sanitation education programmes in schools and with the community
  • Training and ownership- each village will have an elected group of individuals form a committee to manage local work and receive specialised training.

To achieve this, we need to raise £25,000 per village.

A member of the IN Uganda WASH team running a community mapping meeting. Through working with the community to map their villages we can ensure the programme is tailored to the needs of each community and the most vulnerable families can be prioritsed to recieve support.


Progress update – 2018

In 2018, we have supported each community to elect a local water committee for each village and map their villages to identify areas and households in most urgent need. We are also running training programmes to provide technical training for community members so they are equipped with the skills to maintain and repair pumps so clean water is always accessible.

Members of the Water committee receive training on installation, maintenance and operation of boreholes pumps to ensure water sources are well looked after and continue to provide sources of safe water.


WATER– So far we have been able to bore 8 new borehole wells and repair 15 broken water sources. This has given over 6,900 people improved access to safe water near to their homes. We have also supported 3 schools with water storage tanks.

SANITATION – We have helped 15 families built new toilet blocks for their homes and built 4 toilet blocks at schools. 206 girls have taken workshops to learn to make reusable and sustainable sanitary pads.

HYGIENE– All 12 villages have received training on hygiene and sanitation issues. 11 Schools have run hygiene and sanitation programmes, educating over 2,100 students.

Find the latest updates and stories from this programme below

latest news

March 16th, 2018

Story of Hope: Jessica’s story

Jessica and her two grandsons.

Jessica lives in Buikwe Uganda and looks after her two grandchildren after their parents sadly died from HIV/Aids. Her grandsons rely on her to provide for all their basic needs such as food, school, water and healthcare, but Jessica has parkinsons disease so this can be very difficult.

Read more

October 10th, 2017

The Burden of Thirst

In 2016, International Needs met ten year old Eric (waving in the photo) and his family. He lives in Buikwe District in Uganda. Every day before school he had to walk for two hours to collect water for his family.

Read more