In 2002, FXB started the first phase of its program in Siou, northern Togo, to support vulnerable people by strengthening existing medical and school structures through the provision of basic materials. The second phase of this program was launched in 2006 to generalize access to potable water in the Canton of Siou. The program was proposed and managed by Georges Casati, Francois-Xavier’s stepfather.
For the past 30 years, the State of Togo had provided access to drinking water to the populations of Siou. Each village benefited from at least one water pump, supplying the community with free water. Infrastructure maintenance and water consumption were thus the state’s responsibility until 1996, when the state withdrew, compelling the local population to shoulder the costs inherent to the use of water pumps. Given populations live in situations of extreme poverty, they had no alternative but to fetch water from ponds, generally unsuitable for human consumption. Although some water pumps have been taken over by private companies involving high exploitation costs, most unused pumps are decaying.
FXB has developed a program to build traditional wells and restore drinking water to the population of Siou. The success of the project was due to the direct involvement of the populations and the development of a sense of ownership. To this effect, water pump committees have been created in each neighborhood. Their role is to ensure that funds are raised to cover water consumption cost, infrastructure maintenance and conflict mediators.
The 13 existing water pumps have been repaired by replacing the PVC pipes and water drawing taps.
FXB has provided the Canton of Siou with 7 new water pumps.
During the first year, the water consumption was not completely free of charge for local populations. Indeed, to give a sense of responsibility to the population, a very modest contribution was instituted. This contribution has subsequently covered the costs of consumption of the second year. Water consumption during the first year has been covered by the project. The monthly drinking water consumption is on average 600 cubic meters.