Xylem, a US-based global network that seeks to empower young people to tackle water challenges through football, in partnership with Manchester City Football Club (Man City), in England, has undertaken water projects in two suburbs of the Cape Coast Metropolis, in the Central region.
The project, an installation of water towers for the local communities, was done under the ‘Cityzens Giving project,’ and is noted to be part of the social responsibility interventions of Xylem Water Heroes Academy and Man City.
This initiative is expected to ease the water challenges while creating access to clean drinking water for the beneficiary communities, Dehia, a suburb of Cape Coast, and the Football for Hope Centre Ghana, also in the Metropolis.
Access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene is the most basic human need for health and well-being. But billions of people are estimated to lack access to these basic services in 2030 unless progress quadruples.
This underlines the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6, which seeks by 2030, to achieve universal and equitable access to safe and affordable drinking water for all.
The Strategy and Marketing Manager of Xylem Africa, Chetan Misty, the basic drive of the partnership is to use education, soccer and youth engagement to provide infrastructure for water.
He added that “we need to bring all these elements in a way that beneficiary communities understand the value of water, use it sustainably in addition to creating its accessibility.
“By empowering young people, we are ensuring that the next generation cares about water and has the tools to address water challenges,” he said.
Chetan Misty, who was speaking in an interview during activation of the facilities, also maintained that the project overall will help improve the quality of the beneficiary communities.
The Regional Sales and Manager of Xylem for Ghana and Nigeria, Selasi Kpodo, explained that the selected communities were faced with the challenge of regular access to water.
The situation, he said, impacted the education of children in the communities in addition to making them vulnerable to waterborne diseases.
But with the provision of these water facilities, Kpodo said it is a great relief to the communities as it will enable the children in the area to be regular in school, improve hygiene and help prevent them from contracting any waterborne diseases.
Furthermore, he revealed that measures have been taken to ensure good care and maintenance of the facilities provided.
The water tower projects were realised through the local facilitation of Play Soccer Ghana and Planet Water Foundation.
The commissioning of the project was supported by some Man City officials and ex-players of the Club.
Supported by Xylem since January 2020, the project uses football to educate young people aged 6-12 on proper handwashing techniques to improve access to handwashing facilities in schools.
Through the partnership to date, Xylem and Manchester City have reached more than 1 billion people through water awareness, education and volunteerism initiatives that advance a shared mission to create a more sustainable world.