In Constant Pursuit of Water

In the crowded informal settlements of Freetown, Sierra Leone, the quest for water is a constant battle, NPR Goats and Soda reports.

According to UNICEF, less than 1% of Sierra Leone’s residents have piped water in their homes—most families have to lug buckets from communal taps, wells, or springs and streams.

In settlements like Dworzak, whose population swelled as people fled violence from the civil war in the countryside, demand is unsustainable.

Freetown’s mayor is seeking solutions, inaugurating the country’s first sewage treatment plant and supporting a network of kiosks selling water for a small fee.

Another solution: In Nairobi’s massive slums, where water scarcity has fostered an exploitative water market controlled by cartels, a new system of affordable water vending machines aims to ease water stress, Thomson Reuters Foundation reports.

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