Water Brings Both Good and Bad to a Small Village in Ghana

January 18, 2013

Unlocking Word Meanings
Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

1. remote (adj.) 
[ri-moht]– located in a faraway place
Example:  Water is difficult to supply to remote islands.

2. running water (n.) [ruhn-ing] [waw-ter, wot-er]– water distributed through pipes from a source to different areas
Example: People in developed countries have running water in their kitchens and bathrooms.

3. curse (n.) [kurs]– something that causes harm or trouble
Example: Many say drugs are a curse because drugs destroy the user’s body and minds.

4. communal (adj.) [kuh-myoon-l, kom-yuh-nl]– shared by different people or groups
Example: All the guests of the small hotel used only one communal bathroom.

5. local (n.) [loh-kuhl]– a person living in one particular place
Example: The traveler met with a local who showed him around the city.

Read the text below.

For Adjako, a remote farming community in Ghana, clean running water has become both a blessing and a curse.

At the center of Adjako, one communal standpipe provides water to about 800 locals and nine nearby communities. The standpipe was built by the Danish International Development Agency (Danida).

A man named Alfred Budu asked Danida to provide the water to his village. When Budu was younger, people had to walk 2o minutes to get water from a pond. Going home with heavy buckets of water took even more time. It was very difficult, he says. There were dangerous animals around the pond and the unclean water caused diseases.

Now, Adjako’s situation is different. But the gift of water has brought with it other problems.

Because Adjako has water while nearby communities do not, the price of Adjako’s land has increased by 100 times in the past ten years. Many landowners have sold their farmlands to rich people from the city, leaving many local farmers without jobs and homes. Budu himself, who worked as a farmer, lost his job.

The rich who move to Adjako also get water from the source and pay to have running water constantly available. As such, less water goes to the standpipe used by different communities.

The poor have only three hours in the morning and two in the afternoon to take the water they need from the communal standpipe, leading to many fights between people in line.

In Adjako, water may have brought progress, but it has not made the poor richer.

Viewpoint Discussion
Enjoy a discussion with your tutor. 

Discussion A

·         What are some negative things that may happen when we try to help people in need?
·         Do you think we should still try helping people even though it may cause problems? Why or why not?

Discussion B

·         What are the benefits of having a constant supply or access to running water?
·         How can we show that we value water in our everyday lives?


January 18, 2013