Konkmodu is a growing community and in need of some basic infrastructure. There is currently no school, but area chiefs have realized the need and initiated a building project that will help reduce the distance children have to walk for an education. But a reliable, clean water source is another must for a brighter future.
Currently, the 228 community members collect water from a local swamp, sapping their energy, time, and health. After every rainfall, the swamp floods during the rainy season, and community members can use it for several days.
Being a growing community where people are building houses almost every day, it is very difficult for housebuilders to access water to complete their building projects because the swamp scoophole is far away. The frequent flow of builders to the water source muddies it to the point that community members cannot use it for drinking, cooking, and bathing until they wait for sediment to settle.
Farmer Binneh Bangura (collecting water below), 27, said, "I wake up early in the morning to fetch water from the swamp. It is not easy to collect water from the swamp because of the distance and activities at the water well. This is always putting the water in a filthy state which would not be good for drinking. I can only get clean drinking water from the swamp early in the morning when few or no one would have collected water before my arrival at the water well."
He continued, "Life is now becoming extremely hard for me because the water in the swamp well is coming to get low, and the demand for water is going to a high demand. Currently, there is more difficulty to get drinking water. Sometimes, I go beyond this community searching for drinking water. It is not all the time I could be able or have enough time to go far for drinking water because I have other activities to do."
As Binneh said, chores needing water are left undone because of the current water crisis. The collection lines at the swamp are long and cause delays. Petty traders who move their goods outside the community to sell lose valuable income and customers because they waste too much time fetching water each day.
Even when people can collect water, it is contaminated and not healthy to consume.
"Because people also use the swamp water well to irrigate their crops, the water becomes low in the well, which makes the water filthy. I would have to wait until the water is clean before collecting it. That delays my time at the water well and makes me late for school, which then causes problems for me with my teachers," said Sallaimatu S., 17, shown collecting water below.
She continued, "When the water is low in the swamp well, I would bend down to the ground and dip the bucket into the well to collect water. That method is difficult for me. I can also carry the water on my head to the house. Because of that, it is hard for me alone to make more than three trips of water to my house."
A well in Konkmodu will enable community members, including the children, to accomplish their daily tasks more easily and make room for future progress.
What we can do:
Where we will be drilling is centrally located and will relieve many people of the long journey to fetch water and the challenge of accessing clean water.
Our team will drive over the LS200 mud rotary drill rig and set up camp for a couple of nights. Once the well is drilled to a sufficient water column, it will be cased, developed, and then tested. If these tests are positive, our mechanics will install a new India Mark II pump.
By drilling this borehole, Konkmodu and the surrounding community will be provided with plenty of accessible, clean drinking water.
There will be hygiene and sanitation training sessions offered for three days in a row.
Community members will learn how to make a hands-free handwashing station called the "tippy-tap." We will use these tippy taps for handwashing demonstrations and will also teach about other tools like dish racks and the importance of properly penning in animals. We will highlight the need to keep restrooms clean, among many other topics.
This training will also strengthen a water user committee that will manage and maintain this new well. They will enforce proper behavior and report to us whenever they need our help in solving a serious problem, like a pump breakdown.