Whilst there has been significant progress in tackling poverty in Indonesia, around 28.6 million people still live below the poverty line. The Nusa Tenggara Barat province is among the country’s poorest and least developed, with many families experiencing poor health and low nutritional levels. Harvests fail to yield sufficient food to sustain local people throughout the year, and water scarcity worsens the hardship they face.
A project that we funded this year ensured reliable supplies of clean water for nearly 13,000 people across ten locations in the province’s Lombok area. Working with an existing water management committee to share their experience, we were able to empower other communities to work together to install and maintain new water and sanitation facilities.
Wells were drilled, with homes in eight locations directly connected to the new supply. Two communities added public toilets which – together with ongoing work to promote hand-washing and stop open defecation – are helping to boost community health. Widowed mother-of-three Napisah, 43, lives with her eldest son and his family, sharing a room with her youngest boys.
“I go to fetch water five times a day. Sometimes there are more than 20 people waiting to get water,” she explained, describing the two-roomed house. The family get their water from a well some distance from home. They have no latrine and no bathroom.
“The wells that are constructed by Islamic Relief in our village will really help me and other people, God-willing. The well will reduce our burden. I think that my family and I will be healthier because the water is safe.”
“I’m very grateful and thankful to the donors, we hope they receive an abundance blessing from Allah SWT”.
In addition, Islamic Relief Waqf funding also developed livelihoods for local women, reaching 240 poor families in 16 villages. Offering technical assistance to help female farmers maximise their land through the drought seasons, we also expanded our successful mushroom cultivation scheme. Six women’s farming groups were helped to improve their production and expand their marketing network, whilst ten new groups received training and new mushroom houses so they could launch businesses. With her children only able to get seasonal work, the money that Hirmawati, 48, earns from mushroom farming has proven a lifeline for the family – and has enabled her to provide for further relatives too.
“We always work hard and pray to have a good life,” said the mother-of-four. “We always do our best to keep the family fed, and are grateful for whatever Allah has given to us. Alhamdulillah, the mushroom cultivation programme has grown my income, it has helped me to meet our daily needs.”
“Even though we do not have a big income, what we have is always enough to survive. We all commit to doing our best to develop the business. Islamic Relief has changed my life.” Local government is now working with the groups to help the enterprises thrive into the future, so they continue to provide a reliable income for the farmers and their families.
The difference between IWF and other organisations is that IWF will invest your donations and bring a sustainable return year on year and serve people indefinitely.
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