Water Collection Tanks Improve Dryland Living

A 1000-gallon rain-collection tank has made living in the so-called central “dry corridor” of Nicaragua easier for Bertha and Luís and their family of six. As a family dedicated entirely to agriculture, their involvement over the last six years with local partner Fundación San Lucas has helped them thrive in an increasingly unpredictable climate.

Bertha and Luís have participated in the program’s hands-on Farmer Field School, following such principles of climate-smart Conservation Agriculture as planting and harvesting drought-tolerant grains like soy and amaranth.

Bertha enjoys working the land and maintaining their crops, but before the water project, irrigation was an arduous affair. She and her children had to drive an oxcart to a water source over a half-mile away to fill barrels, a dangerous and time-consuming task. With their water collection tank, Bertha is able to fill the time she saves by maintaining a vegetable garden during the dry season, and her children can go to school rather engage in water-fetching drudgery. The family’s health has improved not only because of the greater variety of wholesome foods, but because water allows for more scrupulous hygiene and sanitation practices. There’s enough for cooking, laundry, and watering livestock. Bertha also points out that they are economically better off because of the surplus produce they can sell, and because better health means less money goes for medications.

By providing tools, supplies, materials and knowledge to women like Bertha, Fundación San Lucas encourages sustainable farming initiatives that offer solutions to the many challenges of a dry climate. Being productive members of their families and communities increases women’s self-esteem and helps their community economy grow.

Nicaragua Conquista Nandaime Program
Led by World Renew and Local Partner Fundación San Lucas

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