2020 was an uncertain year for us all, and we continue to work together to protect each other's health and wellbeing. One thing we have been able to rely on here in the UK is clean water.

For the people of Frat, a remote hilly region in Ethiopia, working together to protect one another is a way of life - but clean water is something that has always been out of reach. And our changing climate means the weather in Frat, like many places across Ethiopia, is increasingly unpredictable, putting people's livelihoods at risk. 

Frat isn’t a single place, nor is it a single people. There are three villages, which, thanks to your generous donations, we will reach with a single borehole. Three villages sharing the same hope and anticipation of the day clean water arrives.  ​

And with funding from the UK government, we will reach even more communities on the frontline of climate change with clean water, decent toilets and good hygiene. 

Everything [from the nearby town] is washed into the water. If I had a choice, I wouldn’t touch it with the tip of my finger, but I have to use it for washing, cleaning and drinking.”​
Hawa, community leader
Hawa (right) with her daughter Kadija (left) collecting water from the River Lah in Frat, Ethiopia.
Hawa with her daughter Kadija collecting water from the River Lah in Frat, Ethiopia.
Image: WaterAid/ Joey Lawrence

A diverse and collaborative community

There's a real sense of togetherness in Frat. People are diverse but not divided. The community spirit is strong; people help each other out in times of need, through daily struggles and challenges. 

Hawa, the local women's group leader, is one of Frat's powerhouses. She's incredibly passionate about improving her local area and is never afraid to speak her mind. She's committed to doing anything she can to get clean water for her community.

The two main water sources in Frat are either the polluted River Lah or a pond that shrinks by the day during the long dry season. Both sources are hard to get to – members of the community both young and old have suffered broken limbs collecting water - and the water's not even safe to drink. 

The six-month dry season begins in December, when the walk for water becomes unbearably hot. And as our changing climate makes the weather more extreme and unpredictable, their crops - their only source of income - are under ever greater threat. 

How your money will help

With your support, we are helping families like Hawa's in Frat get the reliable water supply they need to protect their lives and livelihoods, no matter what our changing climate brings. 

We will:

  • Drill for water and construct a reservoir, using solar power to pump water from the well to the reservoir. 
  • Install a gravity flow system that will pipe clean water to public water points in each of the three villages in Frat. 
  • Provide the school with its own water point and separate toilet blocks for girls and boys, and there will be a club to promote good hygiene.
  • Work with our local partners to train the community on operation and maintenance. The water supply system will be managed primarily by the women's association.

With clean water, people will be healthier and able to grow fruit and vegetables in kitchen gardens, so they can have nutritious food whatever the weather.

Children will have more time to go to school, to have fun and to pursue their dreams, free from the burden of collecting dirty water every day.

The day clean water arrives will mark the beginning of their brightest chapter, giving everyone the chance to thrive and rewrite the rest of their story.

Our Future on Tap appeal is now closed. Work has begun in Frat and we will share updates on the progress we’ve made soon. 

If you would like to support our other projects around the world, you can donate towards our work here.

Donate now

Future on Tap contributes to reaching Sustainable Development Goals 6 and 13 by providing climate-resilient water and sanitation to climate-vulnerable communities. 

How else can you get involved?

Explore our 360° immersive story and journey with 12-year-old Yenus around his community to hear what makes Frat such a special place to live.

Image: WaterAid/Joey Lawrence

Find out why Hawa made a lasting impression on our Voices from the Field Officer Frehiwot when she visited Frat and learn about the wider issues Ethiopia is facing.

Hawa in Frat, Ethiopia.
Image: WaterAid/ Joey Lawrence

Discover Ethiopian culture and learn something new by watching our series of virtual classes with key people from the community of Frat, like Mengistu.

A still of the Frat Primary School Principal, Mengistu standing in front of a blackboard in a classroom.

Donate now

We are currently experiencing technical issues with our online donation forms, and are working to get this up and running again soon.

In the meantime you can still support WaterAid by donating over the phone. 

Simply call 0300 123 4341 at a local rate.

Please note calls to this line are recorded for training purposes and to ensure our high standards are maintained.