Today we are announcing the funding of a new clean water programme in the Zinder region of Niger with Oxfam. This latest project follows a decade of investment in clean water projects in Niger. Ahmad Tea recognises that access to clean water is a fundamental human right and as the temperature rises, the time to act is now.
Communities around the world are already witnessing shifts in seasons and more extreme weather events. The faster the climate changes and the longer adaptation efforts are put off, the more expensive and difficult a problem to solve it will become.
Ahmad Tea started funding clean water projects in Niger in 2009 and chose to invest in the region, as it is one of the least developed countries of the world. In Niger, 71% of households access water from unprotected wells and only 29% of households have access to clean water.
Ahmad Tea has provided funding to benefit some of the most vulnerable and insecure communities in Niger. Over 44,000 Nigeriens have directly benefited from what they are calling an “Ahmad Tea” – a new water installation – which enables villages to access clean water for household and domestic use, enabled by the building and rehabilitation of 37 boreholes and water points.
The latest project in Zinder region (Ollelewa- Tarka) of Niger, launched in 2021, is estimated to take 24 months and will reach almost 14% of the population (benefiting 21,121 direct beneficiaries and 50,000 indirect beneficiaries) and will offer them access to high quality water infrastructure. The project will, in particular, reduce the spread of Covid-19 through water and soap provision with hygiene awareness and support women’s empowerment by enabling women-led households to generate an income from growing and selling more nutritional food. This new phase replicates the success of past Ahmad Tea funded projects in the Tillabery (Ouallam) region.
Zahra Afshar, In House Counsel and Head of Charity/CSR at Ahmad Tea said:
“Ten years ago, we chose Niger as a country to help as it consistently ranks as one of the world’s poorest countries. Our project in Niger recognises that for some vulnerable countries in the world, the climate has already changed and action to build a resilient infrastructure must come today. Niger is the lowest ranking country on the human development index, whilst it is high on the Global Climate Risk Index (2021). This juxtaposition is a devastating one for Niger’s population and increasingly fragile context. We’re now calling on other companies to take action now and build resilience, together.”
The aims of the current project are:
- Significant improvement on public health awareness, especially in relation to Covid-19.
- Increased opportunities for selling excess market produce to improve the livelihoods of the communities.
- Giving girls more opportunity to attend school rather than spending time to collect water from far away water sources.
- Empowering women to own the decision making process around water management for their communities.
Niger is a large, land-locked country in West Africa with the constraints of limited natural resources and recurrent drought. It is one of the hottest countries in the world with crisis levels of malnutrition and extreme rates of child mortality. Ahmad Tea has been taking direct action in Niger in partnership with Oxfam, to deliver meaningful support to a population vulnerable to food and water insecurity and that suffers from a severe lack of nutrition. Current predictions suggest temperatures in the Sahel region will rise by 4°C, which could have a devastating impact on farming and water management. 
Ahmad Tea’s success in investing and scaling up our water management projects in Niger proves that investment is not only possible, it is essential to creating stability and resilience.
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