Traditional sources of water dry up very quickly during the dry season, making these well repairs extremely important to the surrounding community. There was a huge turnout present from the community and the church to witness this restoration, including the village chief himself.
When the team arrived, families were suffering from cholera, dysentery, diarrhea and severe dehydration among other preventable water related illnesses. During the team's stay, community members assembled a water committee consisting of two men and one woman to assist the team with the water project whenever possible; they provided any needed construction materials and developed a plan for collecting an annual well maintenance fee. The annual well maintenance fee is 500F per family ($1 USD). Enabling communities to financially support and maintain their water source creates a sense of ownership and increases the likelihood of a self-sustaining water source.
The pump had broken down several times since its installation in 2011. Upon further inspection, the mechanic discovered that it had initially been installed with poor quality PVC pipe. We had to replace the pump head, pump handle, pump base, rods, riser main, the drop pipe, cylinder, and chain. These new parts are all made of stainless steel.
42-year-old farmer and village councilor Aubin Sonme said, "When the pump broke down, we were saved each time because you were faithful to come and repair it. Today, you have installed the new materials so that it will not break down again for a long time. This has given us much joy. I think that me in my heart, with all the people of the village, will be filled with joy. And, with this we will do many things in the village."
Not only did the team restore clean water to Vouregane, but they also brought important information on hygiene and sanitation. They taught about hand-washing, how to properly transport and store water, disease transmission and prevention, how to maintain proper care of the pump, as well as signs and symptoms of dehydration and how to make an Oral Rehydration Solution. All of these lessons were taught in a participatory method to help community members discover ways to improve their hygiene and sanitation choices and implement community-driven solutions.