It was not long ago that Parbati Lamsal used to wake up early in the morning and set out from home, carrying a water-pot to fetch water for her family. It would take her one-hour on foot to reach to the nearby river or stream.

Parbati, a resident of Ward No-4 in Shiva Mandir Village Development Committee (VDC) of Nawalparasi district, is now very happy that the problem of drinking water in her village has been resolved. Drinking water had been one of the main problems faced by Shiva Mandir VDC, which is the second headquarters of the district.

Expressing her happiness Parbati says, “All our daily household works used to be mismanaged as a result, including going out to the fields and sending children to school, which were disturbed due to a lack of time.”

It is not only Parbati who is happy, but all the people of Ward Nos. 4, 7 and 8 of the VDC share her enthusiasm after the drinking water problem was permanently resolved.

Voices raised by the local people had not been listened to for a long time until a Kathmandu-based Non-Government Organisation (NGO) came to their rescue. The NGO called the “Khas Kosh” (Real Trust) provided financial assistance and the local people worked together to complete a drinking water project. Twenty-eight water taps were installed after water from the local Thado River through a 10km water pipe.

The project was completed at the initiative of the local Gaidakot youth club with the financial assistance of Rs 2140,400 provided by the NGO. The project has already been handed over to the local people and has benefited some 1,340 members of 235 families of the area who had been deprived of safe drinking water for the past 25 years, said Roshan Bahadur Shahmagar, Chairman of Shiva Mandir VDC.

"The neighbouring Kawachoti VDC is also facing a similar problem. People in the VDC are compelled to fetch water from as far away as 10 to 15 km in the adjoining Palpa district. This problem should be addressed by the national planning committee of the country," says Mahendradwaj G.C., ex-MP and secretary of Nepali congress district working committee.

Meanwhile, Majhilal Tharu Thanait, another ex-MP and leader of CPN-UML, said "People have the wrong attitude about the role of NGOs in the country when they refer to them as “begging bowls” for local people. Many NGOs, like Khas Kosh, are improving life for local people.