Zambia Community Contribution

SSAAP, founded on the Peace Corps principle of sustainability, arises from Heather Cumming’s experiences being a Peace Corps-Zambia volunteer (2004-2006)

There will always be a need for clean water in countless villages in remote areas of Africa. Funds and interest permitting, the project has the potential to sustain itself indefinitely. (How to Donate)

Heather Cumming searches for sustainable ways to make the projects breathe on their own.

How does she achieve this? By asking the villagers to give ¼ of the cost of a project through their commitment: whether in currency, food, or labor. As well, villagers are encouraged to form committees to oversee the projects started by SSAAP.

For the sustainability of the mission in Simwatachela, Zambia, the community’s beneficiaries must provide labor, maintenance and expertise on the building safety and maintenance of SSAAP’s headquarters and office.  This includes re-roofing, laying cement, cleaning the yard surrounding the headquarters, as well as the cooking shelter, latrine and bathing shelter.

In the well-digging scenarios in rural Zambia and Sierra Leone, sustainability is contingent upon the community’s desire for clean water. Mandatory well committees are organized for any SSAAP- built well to maintain, repair and sensitize the whole community as to the importance of the well. Underlying this, the sustainability factor rests in the concept that those who have invested in the well will oversee the maintenance of their well.

In another of SSAAP’s programs, the Zambia Microloan Program, sustainability comes with the understanding by the recipients that as one loan is re-paid, the loan funds are recycled to another person in need. Here is one young woman’s story:

Lista Chakombelezya is SSAAP’s microloan poster woman. Losing both her parents within 6 months of each other to AIDS when Lista was 12, her uncle hanging himself and her auntie also dying, Lista and her siblings were scattered around the village. Lista completed grade 4 and was then sold into early childhood marriage by age 16 to a polygamist who already had 2 wives and 7 children. At age 21, Lista now has a 5 year old son, and an 18 month old son, yet applied for a loan to begin a small business. She is pictured above.

Sierra Leone Community Contribution  

Sierra Leone’s community contribution toward the SSAAP initiative in this country lies in contributions of food and fuel when visiting outlying villages SSAAP serves. Beneficiary communities provide food for SSAAP volunteers during the visit to the community (be it a day, 2 days, or a week) as well as the fuel for the motorbike to travel from SSAAP-headquartered towns of either Moyamba or Port Loko into the rural community area in which SSAAP serves.




Please consider donating to SSAAP. Any donation will help. No donation is too small.