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More than 100 million litres of water provided to informal settlements during lockdown<span><p>Even as lockdown restrictions have progressively been eased, the City’s Informal Settlements Basic Services team has been working intensively to help vulnerable communities.</p><p>As part of the City’s emergency response to the COVID-19 pandemic, informal settlements, which were identified as most in need of additional access to water for basic hygiene, have been receiving deliveries of clean drinking water via a fleet of water trucks and ‘JoJo-style’ water tanks. This is the first time such an operation of this scale has been undertaken.</p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img class="responsive" src="" alt="" /> </figure></span><span><p>A total of 307 ‘Jojo style’ water tanks have been installed in densely populated informal areas situated on City-owned land in two phases. During Phase 1, the City installed 93 water tanks in various locations. For Phase 2, the City, in a joint initiative with the National Department of Water and Sanitation, installed 214 water tanks throughout the Monwabisi Park area in Khayelitsha. The tanks range in capacity from 2500 to 2700 litres. Efforts are under way to connect the water tanks to the reticulation network as a future source of water.  </p><p>‘Lockdown has been a very challenging time for everyone, particularly our vulnerable communities. Our teams have had to strategise carefully around how we can best provide emergency access to water in higher-risk areas to help residents reduce the spread of COVID-19. In many communities, especially those which are established due to land invasions, provision of water has been limited by factors such as land ownership, density or high water tables. </p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img class="responsive" src="" alt="" /> </figure></span><span><p><br>‘Without the water delivery service to these communities, residents would have had to walk much longer distances to get water, and maintaining social distance at the standpipes would have been difficult. </p><p>‘Despite challenges such as staff being robbed or violent protest action, the Informal Settlements: Basic Services department remained steadfastly committed to helping these communities,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Water and Waste Alderman Xanthea Limberg.</p><p>As part of the COVID-19 mitigation measures, water pressure to informal settlements has been increased to compensate for the impact of illegal water connections. </p><p>‘I would like to thank our dedicated teams and contractors, who continue to go above and beyond to help communities reduce the spread of COVID-19. Thanks are also due to the City’s Environmental Health Department and Scientific Services, who ensure that the water is safe to drink.</p><p>‘I also want to thank National Government for their partnership. This extensive work and collaboration between the City’s Department of Water and Sanitation and our counterparts in National Government has resulted in the successful completion of Phase 2 of the water tank programme,’ said Alderman Limberg.</p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img class="responsive" src="" alt="" /> </figure>​​</span><span>​​</span><span>​​</span><p>Community awareness drives are ongoing to reach residents with messages about how to wash hands effectively with less water, and the importance of social distancing.</p><p>During the higher levels of lockdown, the community awareness campaigns, driving messages of hygienic best practices, have been done through loudhailer tours of neighbourhoods, rapid and extensive dissemination of pamphlets/posters in different languages, a radio campaign, and via community leaders in each settlement. The City is also providing training to communities on how to make squeeze bottles and tippy taps, which make washing hands easier in informal settlements.  </p><p>During the delivery of water to the community, those doing the delivery are also asked to reiterate health and safety advice provided by City Health officials.</p><p><br><strong>End</strong><br></p>2020-10-25T22:00:00ZGP0|#1d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70;L0|#01d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70|City news;GTSet|#62efe227-07aa-45e7-944c-ceebacca891dGP0|#424fbb2f-e27c-44db-b853-dbbdb893d37a;L0|#0424fbb2f-e27c-44db-b853-dbbdb893d37a|Water;GTSet|#2e3de6c1-9951-4747-8f53-470629a399bb;GP0|#a83e4cc6-6869-4ccb-a6ef-366f36e76fb8;L0|#0a83e4cc6-6869-4ccb-a6ef-366f36e76fb8|Informal settlement10

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