The village of Samagipura in the rural Sewanagala Divisional Secretariat belongs to the Monaragala district. Even the 400 students attending the village school are compelled to drink water that is not fit for human consumption There are many kidney patients currently in the area undergoing treatment. The difficulties caused due to the lack of proper drinking water facilities are colossal.
The district of Monaragala has a rich history. With lush and lucrative agriculture many choose farming as their main occupation. It is said even when a seed is thrown on the side of the road- it will grow and flourish in Uva Wellassa.
If we look back at history, Monaragala was a crucial area that gave leadership to the great battle of Uva-Wellassa, as Sri Lankans struggled for their freedom. But today, the people living in this area have been neglected and are in dire straits.
However, the district of Monaragala now has a high poverty rate - approximately one-third of the population lives in poverty. The same number of people do not get enough food. Many do not own the land they cultivate, thus increasing their vulnerability. In addition, many children fail to receive an education that will give them the chance to break the cycle of poverty as they grow older. The rural areas around the city of Monaragala are isolated and often lacking in basic services and infrastructure. Monaragala has been identified as one of the poorest districts in Sri Lanka.
Factors like health conditions, nutrition levels, education levels, and housing conditions impact productivity, thus affecting the poverty status of the households. Therefore, actions towards poverty mitigation contain a complete intervention scheme, not simply in economic dimensions, but including social aspects as well, so that poverty is considered a socio-economic phenomenon. What many urbanites take for granted such as piped-in drinkable water- many of their rural counterparts consider a luxury.
The people of Samagipura were forced to choose between drinking contaminated water or purchasing water at exorbitant costs, putting a financial burden on already struggling families. They made their pleas known to Gammadda and Gammadda answered.
This clean drinking water project will transform the village and the more than 550 families who call it home and contribute to a more equitable society now that their water woes have been resolved. The financial burden on families has also been lifted, as they no longer have to purchase water at high prices. The handover of the project to residents was followed by donations of dry rations for vulnerable families.