Client: Center for Collaborative Investigative Journalism
We awarded a grant to a reporting team of a photographer, Nengi Nelson, and writer, Festus Iyorah, to pursue their proposed project on issues around a lack of a formal water infrastructure in the island community of Sagbo Koji, in Lagos, Nigeria. This crisis forces residents to either pay for water from "waterpreneurs" or gather unsafe water from scant supplies via public bore holes.
Guiding an early career reporting team brings with it some unique challenges with profoundly satisfying growth. This team worked hard to take the reader into the community that, despite being an island on the edge of a major metropolitan area, struggles with the most basic of life's necessities with no proper water infrastructure. "Waterpreneurs" have become a regular part of island life selling water - in bottles and from open tanks that get contaminated in transport across the salt water lagoon - to residents that is either expensive or contaminated. Issues of exploitation loomed over this story presenting some access challenges that they overcame with creativity to provide an informative report.
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