RSK’s joint venture eWATERservices is committed to solving one of humanity’s biggest challenges: the sustainable provision of water across Africa.
Through technology and local operational excellence, the company provides affordable, accessible and sustainable solutions to the water crisis through the installation of Smart Taps, which not only deliver clean water to tens of thousands of people in Tanzania, but also cut out thousands of litres of water wastage and generate enough revenue to cover operation and maintenance forever.
We speak to Geofrey Mbabaye, Head of Installation, who is based in the Morogoro region of Tanzania, about his work and his hopes for the future.
“My role within eWATER is as a technical engineer,” he explains. “Within this, I am the head of construction and installation of eWATER’s pre-paid meters.
“I train and supervise RSK engineers and eWATER technicians, review reports and data from each of four teams and prepare weekly technical reports, as well as advising and taking part in maintaining our taps.
“My typical day is great because it always looks different. Each day, I learn new and different skills and enjoy sharing my ideas and knowledge with my colleagues – both from RSK and eWATER, and wider from there in terms of government ministers,” he adds.
“In practical terms though, my day on-site starts with breakfast (if it’s my choice, then it’s beef soup, milk and chapatis), before jumping in the car with two RSK colleagues and an eWATER colleague who will register tags.
“We stop at the office to sign and collect the solar panel, bottom box and top box for installation. From there, we set off, stopping at the hardware shop to buy materials like cement and fittings before driving three or so hours to the village. In the village, we install a couple of taps, chatting with villagers as we go.
“Once we have installed what we need to, we check back in with the village leaders and then jump in the car and head back to the village and I grab supper of rice, fish and leafy vegetables.”
Geofrey is now in his fourth year working for eWATERservices. He discovered the job through LinkedIn after previously working for the government water department as a technical engineer.
“There are so many benefits to my job that I struggle to know where to start,” says Geofrey. “A few that spring to mind? Collaboration is one. I get so much personally from, and love collaborating with, all of my eWATER and RSK colleagues.
“This makes me love the job even more because it means all of us share the same vision: to get clean water to people across Tanzania at the touch of a tag.
“Working for eWATER also gives me a great work–life balance. We have great employee rights and policy that ensures this happens, and I am so grateful to eWATER for ensuring this work–life balance remains, even when work gets really busy!
“The challenges we face at eWATER are things we are always striving to overcome. One of the main ones is a reccurring one: the wet seasons in Tanzania. This means that we have poor road accessibility due to the mud that makes them so slippery, and it’s not rare to come across broken bridges that can lead to delays in installing and building the taps.
“Another issue can be that when we visit villages to register tags for villagers, some may not be there when we are.
“This is due to lots of villagers having to work during the day in the fields when we are there. The problem is that they then don’t have tags and cannot use the taps, which can lead to complaints. Luckily, we have worked on this, and now often leave the village leader with tags to register any villagers who have been out during the day, after we have gone.”
Geofrey speaks highly of his colleagues and is extremely proud of the team he works with.
I work with a big and brilliant team and we all work together to achieve the same goals
“The thing that makes me most proud of working for eWATER is the brilliant team of eWATER and RSK colleagues and how we get on together.
“The pandemic has clearly impacted us all. When I think of how it has most impacted us at work, it comes down to most of our projects stopping because our staff had to stay at home for their safety.
“I have great ambitions for my career. I really wish to continue with eWATER and become a really professional manager and oversee a brilliant team that can continue to deliver the eWATER mission. My current manager is always inspiring and drives me to get better each and every day.”