Project Status

Project Type:  Borehole Well and Hand Pump

Regional Program: Port Loko, Sierra Leone WaSH Program

Impact: 186 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Mar 2023

Functionality Status:  Functional

Project Features

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Community Profile

Most of Malokoh's 217 community members must travel a long distance each day to collect questionable water from the local swamp since there is not a dependable water source to meet their needs. There are two wells in the community, but one is privately owned, so access is limited, and the other is in need of rehabilitation.

"Although there is a local well in Malokoh, it is privately owned and often unavailable, so the water most relied on by community members is local swamp water," said Marian, shown below collecting water at the swamp. "The swamp water is not always clean and good for drinking, but I must fetch and heat it before drinking. I know that it is a risk to drink the swamp water, but that is the most available water where I can fetch water at any time."

Fifteen-year-old Mariatu, who has the responsibility to collect for her family every day after school, feels similarly. "It is hard for me to fetch water [in] the time that I need it. There is no water well that I can fetch water [from] regularly for drinking," Mariatu (shown below) said.

The water from the swamp is open to all sorts of contamination and is shared with animals and local farmers cultivating crops nearby. Not only is the water at the swamp contaminated and dangerous to consume, but the area around the swamp is grassy and the perfect breeding ground for dangerous animals, like poisonous snakes.

The more the swamp is accessed, the dirtier the water becomes, forcing people to search for water from other sources in surrounding communities which are even further away and waste valuable time and energy.

"Going to the swamp frequently to fetch water is a risk because of the visit of snakes in the swamp. I always must be careful. Otherwise, snakes would bite me," shared Marian.

By rehabilitating the well in this community, hopefully, the time community members spend searching for and collecting water can be used for other valuable things instead.

What We Can Do:

New Well

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, Malokoh 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.

Project Updates

March, 2023: Malokoh Community Well Complete!

We are excited to share that there is now a safe, reliable borehole well at Malokoh Community. As a result, community members no longer rely on unsafe water to meet their daily needs. We also conducted hygiene and sanitation training, which focused on healthy practices such as handwashing and using latrines.

"The new water point will prevent me from water-related illnesses I used to experience, such as diarrhea and typhoid," said 15-year-old Mamusu M. "In addition, the new water point will help me to launder my school uniforms on time. Now that we have a new well, I will easily fetch water after school to launder my uniforms earlier."

"This water point has turned things around for me. Honestly, I was thinking of relocating to another community because of the previous water constraints in this community. Now that this new well is in this community, I will no longer find it difficult to fetch water. I will be able to fetch water with ease since the water point is closer to my house. There will be enough water to cook, bathe, launder, and to drink," said 35-year-old teacher Marian Mansaray.

Marian continued, "The new water point will prevent me from water-related illnesses I used to experience. A couple of months ago I went to the hospital to examine my health. Based on the laboratory results, it shows that I was suffering from typhoid fever. I was not surprised by this because the water we used to drink from the swamp was highly contaminated. Today, all these things will now become history."

We held a dedication ceremony to officially hand over the well to the community members. Several local dignitaries attended the ceremony, including representatives from the Ministry of Water Resources, the Port Loko District Council, and the Ward Councilor. Each official gave a short speech thanking everyone who contributed to this water project and reminding everyone to take good care of it. Then, Marian made statements on her community's behalf. The ceremony concluded with celebration, singing, and dancing.

New Well

The drill team arrived the day before beginning work. They set up camp and unpacked all their tools and supplies to prepare for drilling the next day. The community provided space for the team to store their belongings and meals for the duration of their stay. The following day, work began.

Our team dug two pits next to the drill rig, one for the drill’s water supply and another for what the drill pulls out of the borehole. In some cases, we order a private supplier to deliver the water for drilling since water access is already challenging.

Day one of drilling began as the team mixed water with bentonite, an absorbent clay, in the two dug pits. Next, the team fixed a four-inch carbide-tipped bit to the five-foot-long drill stem. They started the mud pump to supply water to the drill rig so that drilling could begin!

After putting each five-foot length of drill stem into the hole, the team took material samples. We labeled the bags to review them later and determine the aquifer locations.

On the second day of drilling, the team expanded the hole and cleared it of mud. After reaching a total depth of 21 meters, the team forcefully pumped clean water into the well to remove any dirt and debris from the drilling process. We then protected the screened pipe by adding a filter pack. The team hoisted the temporary drilling casing to fortify the pipes with cement.

Yield test.

Next, we bailed the well by hand for three days before conducting a yield test to verify the water quantity. With these excellent results, we installed a stainless steel pump. Water quality test results showed that this was clean water fit for drinking!

New Knowledge

Before conducting any hygiene training, we called and visited the local water user committee to understand the community’s challenges and lack of sanitation facilities. We shared the findings from our discussions with the committee members to help them make the necessary adjustments before the training began. For example, we identified households without handwashing stations or ones that may need to repair their latrines. With this information, community members worked together to improve hygiene and sanitation at home.

We also invited a nurse from the local clinic to help explain some topics and spread awareness about Sierra Leone's free vaccinations for children under five. She was instrumental in reinforcing each lesson.

After this preparatory period, we scheduled a time when members from each household using the water point could attend a three-day hygiene and sanitation training. We then dispatched our teams to the agreed-upon location to hold the meeting.

Training topics covered included handwashing and tippy taps, good and bad hygiene habits, disease transmission and prevention, COVID-19, worms and parasites, proper dental hygiene, proper care of the well's pump, keeping the water clean, the cost recovery system, the importance of using dish racks and clotheslines, the importance of toilets, keeping latrines clean, balanced diets, the diarrhea doll, and HIV and AIDS.

Using a tippy tap.

"I believe if I put into practice the things I have learned, I will not get sick. This new knowledge has given me an impact to stop the bad hygiene practices that I have been practicing before. I am so happy to know the techniques of proper hand washing. I will definitely pass on this knowledge to my children so that all of us will practice proper hand washing. This will help us to be on the safer side from the transmission of diseases such as typhoid, cholera, and diarrhea," said Marian (quoted earlier).


This project required a substantial collaboration between our staff, our in-country teams, and the community members themselves. When an issue arises concerning the well, community members are equipped with the necessary skills to rectify the problem and ensure the water point works appropriately. However, if the issue is beyond their capabilities, they can contact their local field officers to assist them.

Also, we will continue to offer them unmatchable support as a part of our monitoring and maintenance program. We walk with each community, problem-solving together when they face challenges with functionality, seasonality, or water quality. Together, all these components help us strive for enduring access to reliable, clean, and safe water for this community.

With your contribution, one more piece has been added to a large puzzle of water projects. In our target areas, we’re working toward complete coverage of reliable, maintained water sources within a 30-minute round trip for each community, household, school, and health center. With this in mind, search through our upcoming projects to see which community you can help next!

Thank you for making all of this possible!

February, 2023: Malokoh Community Borehole Well Underway!

A severe clean water shortage in Malokoh Community drains people’s time, energy, and health. Thanks to your generosity, we’re working to install a clean water point and much more.

Get to know this community through the introduction and pictures we’ve posted, and read about this water, sanitation, and hygiene project. We look forward to reaching out with more good news!

Project Photos

Project Type

Borehole and Hand Pump

Girls and women walk long distances for water when safe water is very often right under their feet! Underground rivers, called aquifers, often contain a constant supply of safe water – but you have to get to it. No matter what machine or piece of equipment is used, all drilling is aiming for a borehole that reaches into an aquifer. If the aquifer has water - and after the well is developed - we are able to pull water to the surface utilizing a hand-pump. If all goes as planned, the community is left with a safe, closed water source providing around 5 gallons of water a minute through a hand-pump.


Hammond Family Foundation
North Dunedin Baptist Church
44 individual donor(s)