Residents No Longer Fetch Water from Cerme Cave
JOGJAKARTA (KU) - Wagiyem, 63 years old, was so enthusiastic, smiling proudly to see the stage and the tent standing in front of her house. She did not expect it if the official opening of clean water pipeline in her village, Srunggo 1, Imogiri sub-district, was done festively. Moreover, the leadership of UGM and Vice Regent of Bantul came directly to see the water reservoir that has been running water for two weeks.
Standing beside the cow barn in front of her housewith her neighbour, Mrs. Nurwiyarjo, she listened to every word said in the welcome speech by Sumarno, Vice Regent of Bantul. Occasionally they clapped hands.
In fine Javanese language, Wagiyem conveyed her gratitude because her village no longer has trouble in getting clean water. For her, all of this is the blessing of the Almighty through UGM students who built the water pipes into the house. "The community and I are very grateful because now we get water for daily need," said the mother of five children.
While occasionally tidying her scarf worn on the head, Wagiyem still remembers how she and other residents flocked to take water from a fountain near Cerme cave. It is located in the eastern part of their hamlet. But the water they fetched with great effort was only sufficient for cooking and drinking. In fact, for years they had to walk about 1.5 miles to get it. In year 2006, the spring was buried by landslides due to the earthquake. They dug the ground to get the water.
In 2009, KKN PPM UGM students came to their hamlet. They conducted research for making water pipes program. The public was enthusiastic. Two months ago, the excavation of pipelines and wells were done, all residents helped do the task. "Children and adults came to work together," he said.
Most villagers of Srunggo work as tobacco farmers. There are also rice farmers. However, due to water shortages, every citizen was rationed to grow rice. Finally, many of them chose to become tobacco farmers. Before the water pipe was built, to meet water needs, they created small wells which they call Belik. Because not all wells have water, they had to stand in line to get water up to 1-2 hours. "During the dry season, water was hard to find. The well was dry. Water from Cerme cave was only enough for drinking and cooking, but not for bathing," Parman, 50 years old, one of the residents said.
Now, the need of drinking water is no longer a problem for Srunggo villagers. Parman hoped that someday farmers can plant rice in the village with water always irrigates their fields all the time.