With a rapidly changing global climate, rainfall is becoming more and more haphazard – and when the rains don’t come, it’s the rural communities that are hit the hardest. Without proper rainwater harvesting solutions in place, when the rain does fall, only a small percentage of it will be captured. Let’s look at how rainwater storage tanks can benefit rural communities across the world:
- People don’t have to walk far distances for low-quality, contaminated water
- Community subsistence farming efforts can be expanded and improved
- Public spaces can be beautified and improved with more plantlife
Easier Water Access.
Without sufficient municipal water infrastructure, residents of rural communities are often forced to travel far distances (mostly by foot) to get their daily household water supply. Trekking with buckets and basins aplenty, residents are not always guaranteed access to water – as multiple communities might draw from the same water source.
With large rainwater storage tanks collecting and safeguarding rainwater within rural communities, residents can get the water they need from within the settlement – and don’t have to risk venturing too far. Another huge benefit is that the water quality from storage tanks is much better than most rural water sources – which could possibly prevent outbreaks of waterborne illnesses like cholera and typhoid.
Many rural communities rely heavily on residential food crops and small-scale livestock holdings for survival. With inflation on vital food items growing in South Africa and across the African continent, rural communities are relying more and more on their own subsistence farming efforts to make up the food deficit.
As water access is the biggest issue faced, the installation of rainwater storage tanks means that rural communities can better manage their local agriculture. This facilitates crop expansion for greater yields, and these vital crops and livestock can be watered with clean, healthy water. This means healthier food can be provided by the community, for the community.
A community can only truly be uplifted once the residents of that community feel as if things are improving around them. Things that the developed parts of a country take for granted, like grass and roadside shrubbery, are few and far between in rural communities.
For this reason, one way rainwater storage tanks uplift rural communities is by facilitating beautification efforts. With extra water available, rural communities can concentrate on revitalising their public spaces with grass, trees and other plantlife they’d otherwise not be able to cultivate.