Project Status

Project Type:  Borehole Well and Hand Pump

Regional Program: Port Loko, Sierra Leone WaSH Program

Impact: 100 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Jul 2024

Functionality Status:  Functional

Project Features

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Community Profile

The 100 people of Morie Bangura Community struggle to access sufficient water. Their only community source is a swamp they must travel a quarter of a mile to reach. The road is sloped and slippery, and the water leaves much to be desired.

"The water crisis in this community is affecting everyone daily. One of the people in the community affected by the water crisis is the lactating mothers. These women will not be able to fetch enough water to wash the baby's diaper. Even for the water to form a lather with soap will be difficult. The water shortage in the community also affects the daily activities of families. The women will undergo a lot of difficulties when they want to prepare food for the family due to the water crisis," said Field Officer Julius Sesay.

Women and girls are disproportionally affected by the water crisis. To be female in this community means your entire life revolves around collecting water for your family. Almost all their time is consumed by collecting meager amounts of unclean water. To make matters worse, they often fear the journey to the swamp.

"Poisonous reptiles like snakes can easily hide in the bush without their notice. Some of them have been attacked by snakes. As a result, they are often terrified when going to the swamp to fetch water. Some teenage girls are equally afraid to go to the swamp alone. They believe the young boys will hang around the water point to rape or harm them. Therefore, they always prefer to go to the swamp as a group," shared Julius.

27-year-old Adama Kamara, seen below at the swamp, said, "I was attacked by a snake when going to the swamp. From that time, I became terrified when going to the swamp. I hardly go to the swamp alone unless someone accompanies me."

Adama continued to share the hardship. "The thing that makes me suffer more is when the water in the swamp gets dry. The duration in which the swamp gets dry is too long, from March into June. This is affecting even my agricultural work. Failing to water the plants on time affects the plants from growing well. There has been a decline in the yield of the plants."

"The seasonality of the water point makes most of the women not fetch water. Most of the time, these women will be deprived of fetching water from other communities simply because they are not residing in that community. That is why these women will end up returning home with no water. This makes the entire family suffer because water will not be available to do anything. Life without access to clean and safe drinking water is miserable," continued Julius.

If the swamp is dry, community members must travel to other communities to seek water. This is often not well-received by those communities.

Adama said, "Most times, I will not be able to fetch enough water from other communities because I am not a [part of] that community. They will treat me [as if I'm] less important. I will return home with less water that cannot even serve us for a day."

Children also bear the burden of the water crisis in this community. All the time spent collecting or searching for water steals from their future. They can't fully invest in their educations, their first ticket out of poverty.

15-year-old Sinneh K., seen above, shared, "The water situation in the community is affecting me greatly. Ever since I was a child to this age, we have been fetching water from the swamp. The most difficult thing I face is when the water in the swamp runs dry. This makes me find it very difficult to fetch water. Even fetching water for drinking becomes very difficult. There are times I will still take the risk and fetch water."

The story that everyone can tell in this community is their water crisis takes away from every aspect of life.

Installing a well in the Morie Bangura Community will allow them to prioritize other essential life tasks. Adama will spend less time and energy traveling and collecting water so she can abundantly care for herself and her family. Sinneh can expend less energy finding water and more time invested in his future. When children can dream of a brighter tomorrow, it enhances the community as a whole.

The Proposed Solution, Determined Together...

At The Water Project, everyone has a part in conversations and solutions. We operate in transparency, believing it benefits everyone. We expect reliability from one another as well as our water solutions. Everyone involved makes this possible through hard work and dedication.

In a joint discovery process, community members determine their most advantageous water solution alongside our technical experts. Read more specifics about this solution on the What We're Building tab of this project page. Then, community members lend their support by collecting needed construction materials (sometimes for months ahead of time!), providing labor alongside our artisans, sheltering and feeding the builders, and supplying additional resources.

Water Access for Everyone

This water project is one piece in a large puzzle. In Kenya, Sierra Leone, and Uganda, we're working toward complete coverage of reliable, maintained water sources that guarantee public access now and in the future within a 30-minute round trip for each community, household, school, and health center. One day, we hope to report that this has been achieved!

Training on Health, Hygiene & More

With the community's input, we've identified topics where training will increase positive health outcomes at personal, household, and community levels. We'll coordinate with them to find the best training date. Some examples of what we train communities on are:

  • Improved hygiene, health, and sanitation habits
  • Safe water handling, storage & treatment
  • Disease prevention and proper handwashing
  • Income-generation
  • Community leadership, governance, & election of a water committee
  • Operation and maintenance of the water point

Project Updates

July, 2024: Morie Bangura Community Well Complete!

We are excited to share that there is now a safe, reliable borehole well at the Morie Bangura 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.

Adama Kamara, a 26-year-old trader said, "This water well will help me to pay close attention to my garden work. This is because I will have enough time to water my plants as well as to monitor them. This was hard for me to do because I was too engaged trying to fetch water from the swamp to do work at home. Now that we have a well, I will be able to fetch enough water that will serve us for days at home. My children will no longer bother to fetch water from the swamp after coming from school since the well is very close to our house. It will be easy for them to fetch water for the home and even to launder their school uniforms."

Adama (center, blue shirt).

17-year-old Osman shared what access to reliable water means for him. "Things will greatly improve for me. As I will not bother to go in search of water in the morning hours at the swamp since the well is located next to our house. I will now be able to fetch water earlier and then prepare to go to school on time."

Osman at the new well!

We held a dedication ceremony to officially hand over the well to the community members. Several local dignitaries attended the ceremony, including representative Mr. Osman Fofaneh from the Ministry of Water Resources. Each official gave a short speech thanking everyone who contributed to this water project and reminding everyone to take good care of it. Then, Adama and Osman made statements on their community's behalf. The ceremony concluded with celebration, singing, and dancing.

Osman Fofanah celebrates with the community.

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 22 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.

Drilling begins!

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 7 meters. Finally, we tested the yield to ensure the well would provide clean water with minimal effort at the pump.

Yield test.

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.

Building the walls.

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 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.

Handwashing demonstration.

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.

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).

Hygiene lesson.

This was a well-attended training, with one hundred participants, eagerly arriving all three days to engage with the trainers! There were many lively discussions, particularly around HIV/AIDS. There is a strong stigma within the community that prevents people from getting tested, however thanks to the nurse who aided in the training, there is now more ease amongst participants.

Adama added, "This training has helped me to understand that the eating and drinking of contaminated food and water are the major causes of [the] disease we are suffering from."


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.

Adama added, "This training has helped me to understand that the eating and drinking of contaminated food and water are the major causes of [the] diseases we are suffering from."

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!

May, 2024: Morie Bangura Community New Well Underway!

The lack of adequate water in Morie Bangura 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!


Project Underwriter - World Water Day Match
84 individual donor(s)