Addressing a Water Shortage in Rural South Lebanon
A USAID-Provided Electricity Generator Improves Access to Water
Laure Chaaya loves her homegrown grapes. She cultivates them and other fruits by the bushel outside her home in the South Lebanon village of Jinjlaya.
Her yield hasn’t always been successful, however. Until recently, state electricity cuts reaching up to 23 hours per day in the area forced the small village, which comprises only about 50 households, to reduce the operating hours of its water pump, leading to water shortages. Without a backup power supply, Jinjlaya’s residents, most of whom are farmers,
struggled to cultivate their crops. They had to pay to truck in water for their fields and homes. Beyond cutting into their revenues, the situation caused conflicts between Jinjlaya and two neighboring towns that rely on the same pumping unit for
their water supply.
The situation prompted USAID’s Community Support Program (CSP) to supply Jinjlaya with a generator as an alternative power supply to improve the water pump’s operating capacity.Without the CSP-provided generator, the mayor says, the village and its neighbors would have run out of water. Instead, more than 1,400 residents in the area have a continuous water supply, and relations among the villages are no longer tense. Rather than paying to truck in water, the residents can purchase other essential items such as fuel for their homes and kitchens. “Now we are less affected by Lebanon’s many crises, including
water, fuel, and electricity, and relations are fine with our neighbors,” Laure says. “Water is everything for our village. Without it we wouldn’t be able to survive.”
This activity is part of a larger USAID-backed initiative that provides a broad range of support to improve the delivery of essential services and enhance economic opportunities in underserved communities, primarily in Lebanon’s North, South, and Beqaa Valley.