Project Status

Project Type:  Borehole Well and Hand Pump

Regional Program: Port Loko, Sierra Leone WaSH Program

Impact: 168 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Feb 2024

Functionality Status:  Functional

Project Features

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The only water source for the 168 people in Korankoya is an open scoop hole in the local swamp.

People try to get to the swamp as early as they can so that the water won't be stirred up from all the other people and animals scooping out water all day. But even if someone is the first person to fetch water, tadpoles, water plants, decaying leaves, and other debris may still end up in people's buckets.

So, all water coming from this source must go through a rigorous treatment procedure before it can be used for most purposes. First, the water must sit for several hours so all the particulates will settle to the bottom of the container. Then, the water is sieved to remove as much of this as possible. Finally, it is boiled if there is firewood and time to spare.

Unfortunately, even after all this care, the water would still be contaminated. The scoop hole sits in the middle of a field of farms and gardens where fertilizers and pesticides are used. People also bathe and launder their clothes near the swamp to avoid carrying so much water back and forth, which allows soap and other contaminants to seep into the surrounding soil. No amount of boiling or hand-sieving can remove these things from water. This is why Korankoya's people suffer from chronic diarrhea and skin rashes.

"I have lived here for quite a long time," said 30-year-old farmer and trader Mbalu Bangura (pictured below carrying water home from the swamp). "Living in this community is difficult because of the challenges I always have fetching water. The only water source is the swamp, [which] is far from my house. I can only get clean drinking water from the swamp when I wake up early in the morning. Besides that, other people would have gone to fetch water, and the water would be filthy to drink."

"I boil the water and filter it before drinking," Mbalu continued. "This is also time-spending, and when I have other activities to complete, it would be difficult for me to meet deadlines.

"I usually become worried when my children are out fetching water from the swamp. The water area is prone to snakes, and the children are at risk anytime they go to fetch water. It is not easy for me to go to my farm early and come back early to prepare food for my family. I will be extremely glad if we can get a water well in this village. This will help to prevent us from the risks we are taking to fetch water from the swamp."

"I am not happy about the water condition in this village. It is affecting me every day," said 16-year-old Hawanatu S (pictured below at the swamp). On top of walking to the next village to go to school every day, she makes many trips to the swamp on behalf of her family, leaving her too drained for studying — or playing.

"I wake up early every morning to rush to the swamp to fetch water and prepare for school. It is difficult for me to fetch water and prepare for school without getting late. After school, I would fetch water to the house and wait for my mother to come before we could start preparing food. We finish preparing food late in the evening. Life is not easy without water to drink and use for other purposes."

Safe, reliable water access will reinvigorate the people of Korankoya who have had to drink swamp water their entire lives. With water closer at hand, they will be able to accomplish more tasks throughout the day and reserve some time for fun or rest at night.

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, 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

February, 2024: Korankoya Community Well Complete!

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

Community members celebrate clean water!

"As a parent, I'm very happy for this new water point and [its] big impact on our community. [It will] help me to go to my garden early and come back to prepare food before my children return from school. My children will now have enough time to study and pass their exams. Before, they went to the swamp in search of water when they returned from school. They sometimes returned late from the stream, tired, and [would] just go to bed without reading their books. All these constraints are over now. They will no longer go to school late," shared 30-year-old farmer M'balu Bangura.

"We are now free from water sicknesses like diarrhea and cholera. I want to personally thank you for the hygiene and sanitation training. I'm so happy for this water facility in my community. I promise we will take good care of it so it can last for future generations," M'balu exclaimed.

M'balu celebrating!

"Completing this water point in my community will help me meet my goals, like always going to school, having time to read my notes, and having good grades. I will no longer go to the swamp early to fetch water before school. I will prepare food for my family immediately [when] I return from school. Really, water is life! This water point has made life easy for everyone in my community. Thank you for saving our lives from waterborne sicknesses. I'm so happy all my dreams will come true," 16-year-old Hawanatu shared excitedly.

Hawanatu (black shirt) splashing clean water.

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 Resource and the Port Loko District Council. Each official gave a short speech thanking everyone who contributed to this water project and reminding everyone to take good care of it. Then, M'balu and Hawanatu made statements on their community's behalf.

Women, men, and children danced and sang songs from their local languages, mainly Susu and Krio, to show how happy they were for the new water point in their community. During the dedication ceremony, the head man of the community, Abu Sillah, was seen celebrating. He used a water container as a drum while dancing, and the women sang. A little girl named Kadiatu happily celebrated by dancing to the songs they sang.

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 next day, the team began to drill. We reached a final depth of 28 meters. The team did a soil test and forcefully pumped clean water into the well to remove any dirt and debris from the drilling process.


Next, the team bailed the well and flushed it, clearing any debris generated by the drilling process. This well has a static water level of 12 meters. Finally, we tested the yield to ensure the well would provide clean water with minimal effort at the pump.

Yield testing.

As the project neared completion, we built a cement platform, walls, and drainage system around the well to seal it from surface-level contaminants. The drainage system helps to redirect runoff and spilled water to help avoid standing water at the well, which can be uncomfortable and unhygienic and a breeding ground for disease-carrying mosquitoes.

The well is complete!

At last, we installed the pump and conducted a water quality test. The test results showed that this was clean water fit for drinking! After that, we contacted the community to schedule the dedication for the well.

New Knowledge

Before conducting 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.

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, teen pregnancy, worms and parasites, proper dental hygiene, menstrual 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 disease transmission and prevention (including COVID-19, Ebola, Hepatitis, HIV and AIDS).

Disease transmission training.

One topic that was impactful for this community was disease transmission. It was an eye-opening lesson for many who had lost family members to water-related diseases, such as cholera, but never knew how to prevent it. One of the participants was inspired to share her story.

She said, "This poster reminded me of an incident I witnessed during the time I was staying with my mother at her village. The children in that community are allowed to defecate anywhere in the community. This had been going on for years. During the rainy season, we had a cholera outbreak in the community, and within a week, we lost five people to the outbreak. Everyone was confused about the situation. The healthcare facility was two miles away in the neighboring community, posing a challenge to get people to the clinic. Not only are motorbikes hard to come by, but it is also the rainy season, making all travel time-consuming and dangerous."

She continued, "Village communities are slowly getting used to taking loved ones to the hospital for treatment instead of relying on native medication. The cholera outbreak was so bad that health professionals were sent to different communities to find out the common cause of the outbreak. The moment they came to our village, it was then clear to them that there were no good hygiene practices. If children are allowed to defecate anywhere they like, that can definitely lead to an outbreak. The health professionals immediately were aware of the health situation in the community and gathered all the community leaders, and held an emergency meeting as to what can be done to reduce the chances of cholera. What was meant to be an assessment turned out to be an entire day of fresh lessons for the people to be aware that they are responsible for the outbreak in their community. Bad hygiene practices can lead to untimely deaths and forever debilitating illnesses."

Building hand washing stations.

The purpose of our hygiene and sanitation training is to share knowledge that is life-changing. Another participant, named Alpha Turay, had lost children due to water-related illnesses many years ago, but he never knew how they got sick or how to stop it from happening. Now, he and the rest of the Korankoya Community have the knowledge and tools to keep their families healthy.

M'balu also shared her thoughts about the training. "I'm glad I was part of this important training. I have learned many things from this training that I will put into practice. Truly, this new knowledge has helped me to know how to take care of myself, my environment, my food, and even the water I drink daily."


This project required a substantial collaboration between our staff, our in-country teams, and the community members. 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 Kenya, Uganda, and Sierra Leone, we're working toward complete coverage. That means 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!

January, 2024: Korankoya Community New Well Underway!

The lack of adequate water in Korankoya Community costs people time, energy, and health every single day. Clean water scarcity contributes to community instability and diminishes individuals’ personal progress.

But thanks to your recent generosity, things will soon improve here. We are now working to install a reliable water point and improve hygiene standards. We look forward to sharing inspiring news in the near future!

Project Photos

Project Type

Abundant water is often right under our feet! Beneath the Earth’s surface, rivers called aquifers flow through layers of sediment and rock, providing a constant supply of safe water. For borehole wells, we drill deep into the earth, allowing us to access this water which is naturally filtered and protected from sources of contamination at the surface level. First, we decide where to drill by surveying the area and determining where aquifers are likely to sit. To reach the underground water, our drill rigs plunge through meters (sometimes even hundreds of meters!) of soil, silt, rock, and more. Once the drill finds water, we build a well platform and attach a hand pump. If all goes as planned, the community is left with a safe, closed water source providing around five gallons of water per minute! Learn more here!


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Parker Hannifin match
KSM Business Services
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US Bank Foundation
Bulkin Charitable Fund
100 individual donor(s)