Our commitment to provide access to drinking water to local communities is fundamental to the project.
The aim of the Hinda Integrated Project is to contribute to improve the living conditions and sustainable development of local communities located in the M'Boundi, Kouakouala, Zingali and Loufika fields (Hinda District), where Eni Congo operates. Our commitment to provide local communities with access to drinking water is fundamental. Indeed, the availability of drinking water in local communities is one of the priority areas of intervention in the Eni strategy of Community Investment in Africa. In this context, the Hinda Integrated Project is the result of a Memorandum of Understanding signed on 31 August 2011 with the Congolese Government to strengthen cooperation and partnership with local and national authorities, the population and local and international NGOs.
Split into two phases, the project addresses four inter-related areas of concern – water, agriculture, health and education – and covers a population of around 25,000 spread over 22 villages. The first phase – from 2010 to 2015 – focused on infrastructure and the access to basic services previously lacked in meeting the primary needs of the population: access to clean water, improved healthcare, early-years education and food production. The second phase – from 2017 onwards – concentrates mainly on implementing solutions that will guarantee the comprehensive involvement of stakeholders ranging from community associations and groups to departmental authorities. It seeks to reinforce local expertise through training, awareness campaigns and activities intend to build self-sufficiency. Furthermore, training will provide a common thread for launching small businesses and promoting young enterprises and start-ups, which will eventually contribute to the socio-economic development of the area.
In the initial phase, the project realized 22 safe water wells linked to 30 outlets (fountains). Seventeen of the wells are powered by solar energy, one runs on the electricity grid, three on generator power and one is hand-operated. In the second phase of the project, five wells are being built to ensure access to drinking water and one of 22 wells built in the first phase is being rehabilitated. Fourteen public facilities are connected to the wells (four schools, nine health facilities and the CATREP). In agreement with the local Water Department Management, the Local Water Management Committees will be responsible for managing the wells. Their role is to monitor people’s access according to prearranged timetables, control daily maintenance and ensure involvement of the population in all matters of water supply and hygiene. Community water wells reduce hardship for women and children, who travel long distances every day to fetch supplies. Furthermore, the growing availability and cleanliness of drinking water reduces gastro-intestinal diseases and illnesses linked to contamination, contributing to improving the health of the population – especially that of younger children.
Eni, in collaboration with NGOs such as Médecins d’Afrique and AVSI, is committed to social development activities and raising awareness on how to use wells and the water drawn from them. This is achieved through community meetings and also door-to-door contact. Subjects dealt with have included water quality, illnesses linked to consuming contaminated supplies and the use of drinking water for domestic use.
To encourage behaviour that fosters protecting biodiversity, the environment and sustainable development, the project team will organise an awareness-raising campaign in the local communities and schools with the aim of helping residents become key players in building awareness in their communities.
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