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Mercy Corps program delivers clean water to Kosovo village

Kosovo, May 30, 2003

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    Woman and children in one Kosovo village Photo:

For many years the residents of Temal, a small village in Kosovo, have dreaded walking to the town's wells to gather water, especially during the cold winter months. Now, many people in Temal will no longer need to make that trip.

Last week, the town's wells were replaced by a new water system that will bring clean water directly into the homes of many of the residents.

The water system project, 3km in length, came about after a group of women in Temal met with Mercy Corps to discuss projects that could improve the quality of life in the village. After much discussions and planning, it was decided that bringing healthy water to the village was a top priority.

"Until now we were furnished with water from wells, most of which were polluted because of their proximity to cattle stalls and manure," Rrahime Lipaj told the Koha Ditore newspaper. "From now on, we will drink clean water that comes from the Vrelle spring."

The water system project, which cost 50 million Euros, is expected to greatly reduce the level of illness in Temal and to make life a bit easier for its residents.

"With well water we were never able to complete all of our household chores and were unable to keep cleanliness for our families as we should," Lipaj said.

Mercy Corps has worked in Kosovo since 1993. The organization currently operates programs that focus on improving health conditions, creating economic opportunities and that promote reconciliation.