Project Status

Project Type:  Well Rehab

Program: Wells for Burkina Faso

Impact: 500 Served

Project Phase: 
Under Community Care
Initial Installation: Jan 2015

Project Features

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Community Profile

Upon completion of the project, our partner in the field reports...

Community Details

In the remote village of Nabale, there are three different people groups and language groups living together off the land: the Pougouli, the Mossi, and the Fulani people. They are farmers and small herdsmen often competing with each other over valuable resources necessary to sustain their lives and that of their livestock. When the first inhabitants of the village arrived in this area, it was a forest and there were all sorts of wild, dangerous animals. The first inhabitants said that they would sit down because one day the village was going to "warm up." After many talks and discussions with village leaders about this abandoned well, and the fact that it had broken down over a dozen times since 1992, they were more than ready to see this project realized. The Living Water team explained the rehabilitation process and the requirements on their part. They agreed to: (1) build a wall enclosure around the pump, a four meter square, (2) to construct a drainage canal six meters long to evacuate excess water away from the well, (3) to build an animal trough, and (4) to dig a drainage soak pit, as well as mobilize the people and clean up the entire area surrounding the well.

Community mobilization was initially restricted because of the weather as the team entered Nabale Community during the rainy season. However, the rain was not the only challenge for this project as poor leadership and minimal guidance from community elders made it difficult for the team to gather the people for the pre-construction meeting or for hygiene and sanitation lessons. The people were used to competing with each other for water, because for a long time there was only one well in the community that had a functioning pump. After the pump broke, the people had no other option than to collect water from unprotected hand-dug wells (5), tube wells (2) or hand-dug protected wells (2). Cholera, dysentery, typhoid and malaria were a regular occurrence due to the dirty water and a lack of education in hygiene and sanitation. Additionally, the community unknowingly compounded their health problems by practicing open defecation and other unsafe hygiene and sanitary practices. Though they were divided, the people desperately needed access to safe water to not only alleviate water burdens placed on their bodies, but also to relieve the community division developed in fear of not having water. Thankfully, the Living Water team had no problems during the well rehabilitation process, or traveling into the community the number of times Living Water visited Nabale to encourage and teach families.

When the Living Water Burkina Faso team arrived to restore the community’s well, they learned that the 500-family community of Nabale had not had access to water for a long time. (Editor's Note: While this many people may have access on any given day, realistically a single water source can only support a population of 350-500 people.  This community would be a good candidate for a second project in the future so adequate water is available. To learn more, click here.) The pump was completely abandoned, and the villagers had taken all of the materials out of the well—leaving it dangerously open and uncovered. When the team began cleaning out the well, the water was "very dirty," according to a Living Water Burkina Faso team member, but after pumping for a while the water became clear. The team successfully restored safe water access in Nabale by further developing the well to create a 51-meter-deep borehole and by replacing the pump head, pump handle, pump base, pump rod-sucker rods, pump reservoir-water tank, rising main-drop pipe, cylinder, chain and cylinder seal assembly. The community, though still divided at heart, worked together to form a six-person water committee. The team trained the water committee to manage the water resources and in small well maintenance repairs. It is solely through the provision of safe water and because of the people’s devotion to keeping safe water in their community that the different people groups began to work together! The generous giving from The Water Project has not only benefited the people in body, but has also aided overall improved health, community development, and most importantly for the people of Nabale, it has developed a form of comradery among the three people groups.

Not only has safe water re-entered the community, but also with safe water, the gospel of Jesus Christ. The Lord used Living Water and their partners from the Krista Lawyir Association and The Water Project to unite his children through the hope of safe water and the “living water”—Jesus Christ. Because there is no local church serving in or around this community, the Living Water evangelist shared Scripture and oral Bible stories with 516 people (116 men, 180 women and 220 children). John 3:16 was shared, as the evangelist focused on not only telling the people, but showing them a glimpse of how much God loves them—the world—that he gave his only Son so that whoever believes in him will not perish, but will have everlasting life.

Hygiene Promotion

Although access to safe water is paramount for improved health and overall community development, safe water alone is not enough. To truly allow beneficiaries to know safe water, the Living Water team shared life-saving hygiene and satiation lessons with 206 people (79 men, 69 women and 58 children). Using a LWI Traditional Method, which is a participatory method to help community members discover ways to improve their hygiene and sanitation choices and implement community-driven solutions, the team introduced the people to hygiene education. Some of the lessons taught were: germs, hand washing-proper techniques and water-saving methods, good-bad hygiene behaviors, proper care of the pump and keeping the water clean. After the hygiene and sanitation lessons, a beneficiary shared the following:

"We are very excited because God has not forgotten us! We give him thanks and also thank the Krista Lawyir Association and their partners Living Water International and The Water Project. This work is very important for us—the people of Nabale—and with this education that you have come to teach us, it will permit us to have a lot of good health. We thank you infinitely and wish you a lot of luck and success for your activities. Thank you."

Community Member Interview

"The people of Nabale are very numerous," shared 42-year-old community member, farmer and beneficiary, Adam Coulbaly. "We have just three quartiers and there was one pump that worked. It was always a problem getting water and we had to compete against one another to get water. The pump never rested. But this pump broke down a long time ago. We took out the materials but we didn’t have the money to repair it. But today, with this new installation, the people of Nabale are very happy! I want to thank you, on behalf of them, for your work. May God increase your good actions. We are very proud of this well."

Christian Witness

Because there was no church in the community, the Living Water evangelist shared the gospel through Scripture, oral Bible stories and by showing the JESUS film with beneficiaries. The team shared the following:

"On the day of the installation, the 'living water' was proclaimed as our greatest need, and John 3:16 was shared. This village is in a dark place, but the light of Jesus shone brightly through this project and all the actions that accompanied it from beginning to end. His Word has been planted in the hearts of a people who do not know him or honor him. Animism, idolatry, and pagan practices are very prevalent in this area. It is a dark place. The JESUS film was also shown to 516 people. The people asked us to come back and teach them more! It's a miracle. They didn't know how to thank us more. Pray for this village and that we find a way to go back and evangelize among them as God has surely opened a door!"

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Project Photos

Project Type

Well rehabilitation is one of the most cost effective ways to bring clean, safe water to a community.  Sometimes it involves fixing a broken hand pump, other times it means sealing a hand dug well to prevent it from being contaminated.  These repairs, and often time total replacements, coupled with sanitation and hygiene training make a huge impact in communities.


The Evangelical Free Church of Blairstown
Power Force Children (Faith Christian Family Church)
St. Mark's Presbyterian Church
Grace Presbyterian Church, PCA, Inc.
Perth-Andover Baptist Church
1 individual donor(s)