Rainwater Harvesting

Rainwater harvesting ensures good quality water but a large storage tank is needed to survive lengthy periods without rain

Here a building with a corrugated metal roof has the rainwater directed via the gutters and pipework into a large tank for storage.

A tricky balance must be struck between the size (hence cost) of the tank, the area of roof and the average annual rainfall for the locality.

Pipes and gutters must be kept in good condition, not always easy in a remote village.


A colourful group of women is seen in front of the large collection tank at Malilita clinic, built by FUM, with the high level feed pipe from the clinic roof.

The availability now of heavy duty plastic tanks makes them the preferred option. They are more durable and can be connected together to increase capacity.

All tanks have to be mounted on a stand at least 60cm high so that the water can be drained into containers for carrying away.

Domestic rainwater harvesting

An interesting development by a partner group
Tools with a Mission uses wooden moulds that a local builder can use on site to create a tank suitable for a single household.