Hopes Malaysia helps rural Kota Belud communities overcome water scarcity with gravity water systems
The Sayap Magambai villagers and project team marking the completion of the community's gravity water project.
16 August 2023
By Wartawan Nabalu News
KOTA BELUD: A local civil society organisation (CSO) has been working with rural communities in Kota Belud to provide them with sustainable access to clean water through gravity water systems.
Hopes Malaysia, established in 2016, has empowered over 10,000 villagers from 15 rural settlements in Kadamaian, Kota Belud to construct, maintain and repair their own water systems, using natural sources and durable materials.
The CSO recently completed a project with the villagers in Kampung Sayap Magambai, Kota Belud, sponsored by The Malaysian Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
The project involved reconstructing a 10-year old gravity water system that was leaking and unable to supply enough water for the over 300 residents. The villagers, with the guidance of Hopes Malaysia, installed new poly-piping and water tanks that can channel water from an uphill source to their homes and farms.
The project has improved the villagers' daily water usage, reaching the World Health Organisation's daily water requirement. The villagers also learned how to look after their water system and prevent future damages. Having proper access to clean water means a lot for the families in Kampung Sayap Magambai as they can now work towards brighter, more sustainable livelihoods.
Sandra, a resident of Kampung Sayap Magambai, expressed her gratitude for the project and its impact on her community.
"We are thankful that we have enough water to use at home and can look after the system now. We can focus on earning money from farming and handicraft, and putting our children through school. Lucky for us, but there are many other nearby villages that don't have any water for homes," she said.
Hopes Malaysia’s Founder Sam Lee stresses the importance of connecting these detached communities with gravity water systems to avoid long-term livelihood issues.
“Because of poor water access, villagers will face soil infertility and food insecurity, negatively impacting their futures. The cost of living is increasing and families are falling deeper into poverty just to have the basic needs to survive. There are over 74 villages all over Kadamaian alone. Using a gravity water system is the only way for some communities to have a safe and consistent water source.
“We believe in empowering the communities to care and utilise their new assets for lasting benefits. Villagers have been reaching out to us to help them connect to clean water because they have no other option.
“Our CSO already has more than 10 villages on our project waiting list. We are urgently looking to carry out gravity water projects once we are able to secure enough CSR sponsorship funding, before their conditions worsen and lives are lost," he said.
Aligned with the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in this Decade of Action, Hopes Malaysia aims to equip more rural Sabah communities with clean water via impactful and long-term CSR partnerships. For more details on Hopes Malaysia's sustainable charity projects and CSR projects, kindly email firstname.lastname@example.org or contact +60162417838.