Rotary Demerara assisting flood-hit Malali residents to access clean and safe water
Malali is an Amerindian community in Region 10 (Upper Demerara/Berbice), approximately 45 miles from Linden, which was severely hit by the recent floods.
Even though water is receding, residents face the issue of accessibility to clean and safe drinking water, and for other day-to-day purposes.
The Rotary Club of Demerara, which has a long-standing relationship with the community, has donated several drums and water tanks to allow the approximately 270 residents to capture rainwater in the interim.
Orlayne Williams, Toshao of the village, explained that apart from the serious impacts of the flood, which saw water levels as high as homes, they also had to deal with the issue of the COVID-19 pandemic.
More so, the flooding has affected the main livelihood of fishing and hunting for the community located along the river bank.
“We can’t get meat and fish, and it really has affected us in Malali…even to the loggers, they can’t get to do logging because of the softness of earth and the tractors can’t move. It is all stalled at the moment,” Williams expressed.
He added, “With the river water, we can’t use it, even to the creek water. So, we now depend on the rainwater, but we have no resources to store it, so these barrels will help us a lot.”
Williams further revealed that using the current river water to bathe is causing rashes for both adults and children, which is another reason they are most happy to receive the barrels.
Carey Griffith, President of the Rotary Club of Demerara, said they wanted to improve access to clean water, and hoped that this effort helps to decrease a potential issue of water-borne diseases in the community.
Griffith indicated the Club intends to do more impactful community projects to assist the Guyanese public.