Project Status

Project Type:  Dug Well and Hand Pump

Regional Program: Port Loko, Sierra Leone WaSH Program

Impact: 500 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Jan 2019

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 11/07/2023

Project Features

Click icons to learn about each feature.

We visited Moniya Community and were impressed to find a water point that is very well cared for. The area around this well is clean, and the only time a community member gets anywhere near the well is when they want to fetch water. It is housed in its own concrete building.

But there is one problem: This well is just not deep enough.

As a result, this well dries up during the hottest months of the year. People turn to nearby swamps and other unprotected wells to collect their water. These are open to contamination from animals and human activities - such as washing clothes in the open swamp.

Moniya is a rural village that is yet to experience the urbanization occurring in other areas. Its vegetation is intact and the buildings are constructed with local mud blocks. It is peaceful here, especially when villagers are on their farms.

Most people here work as farmers, producing some food for themselves and some to sell in local markets. Some of the women will take part in in trading wares at the local market to supplement the farming income.

Nearly all of the households in the community have latrines. The sanitation condition of the latrines is not impressive. Most of them leave their pits uncovered, where flies breed. Few have handwashing stations, a result partly because of the water shortages faced by this community.

"We do not have the resources that would improve our hygiene status especially enough water to put in the "kulas" so that we can wash our hands after using the toilet. So I can say that our status is not good even though most of the homes here have a toilet," Pa Ali Bangura said.

What we can do:


There will be hygiene and sanitation training sessions offered for three days in a row. We will teach about good and bad hygiene, penning in animals, and building good tools like handwashing stations and dish racks. An important session will also be held on well management and sustainability.

Well Rehabilitation

We see that there's been a drop in this area's water table and the well is going dry. We feel it is important to convert this hand-dug well to a borehole at the bottom, thus giving this community a year-round source of safe drinking water.

We will be hand-drilling a borehole down inside this hand-dug well. The community will host our drill team for days at a time, and may also provide labor. Women will volunteer to cook rice for the team and the other community volunteers.

Once this plan is implemented, this community will have access to safe drinking water in both quality and quantity, even through the dry months.

Project Updates

November, 2019: Giving Update: Moniya Community

A year ago, your generous donation helped Moniya Community in Sierra Leone access clean water.

There’s an incredible community of monthly donors who have come alongside you in supporting clean water in Moniya Community. Month after month, their giving supports ongoing sustainability programs that help this community maintain access to safe, reliable water. Read more…

January, 2019: Moniya Community Project Complete

We are excited to share that there is a safe, reliable well in Moniya Community that’s providing clean water! Hygiene and sanitation training was conducted, which focused on healthy practices such as washing hands and using latrines.

Clean Water Restored

Our teams took the existing hand-dug well and transformed it into a borehole by drilling straight into the existing well. The new depth and well type means that this community now has reliable water throughout the year!

The Process:

The first thing the drill team did when they arrived in Modia Community was to contact leadership to find a place to camp.

Here is how we restored clean, reliable water here:

Day 1

1. Raised the tripod

2. Found the original depth

3. Socketed the pipes

4. Installed temporary drill casing

5. Lined up the drill rods

6. Drilled!

Day 2

This day started with prayers. A long sand bit was used to destroy the rock, and they drilled an additional seven feet, making a total of seventy. But it was a really tough day because of the rock. So seven feet drilling was more than enough. That was it for this day.

Day 3

1. Installed screening and filter pack

2. Cemented an iron rod to well lining, and fixed it with an iron collar at the top

3. Bailed the well by hand for three days and flushed it

4. Tested the yield (we got a static water level of 42 feet going at 41 liters per minute – more water than a hand-pump can pull)

5. Built a cement platform, walls, and drainage system

6. Installed a stainless steel India Mk11 pump

7. Water quality test

At exactly 1:45pm, the team arrived here for this wonderful ceremony. The community, having the pre-knowledge, were already at the well. They were in groups and were singing and dancing with joy on their faces.

Upon seeing the dedication team, they formed a circle round the well and the leader of the circle was village headman Pa. Momoh Suma. He was the happiest man by all indication.

Three other women took the lead role after Pa. Suma. Some members of the team joined the dancing as usual and everything started again. More time was allowed for more dancing because the community people had earlier requested this opportunity. This was their way simple way of communicating how happy they were for the well.

After the dancing, Zainab gently invited everyone to gather round the well and declare the ceremony open. After the prayers the headman was granted the opportunity to formally dedicate the well on behalf of the community.

He used the opportunity to express gratitude on behalf of his community to the donors and the organization for love they have shared with them. He promised the team that his community will take the greatest care of the well.

After his short wonderful speech, the kids were also give the chance to have some fun around the well. They pumped and splashed water at each other. They wrestled with each other for a drink. Each wanted to be the first to have a sip of the 'new water' as they referred to it.

After the fun, Zainab delivered a very wonderful speech with respect to pump care. The team after some good singing and dancing, said their final goodbye, and left.

New Knowledge

The team coordinator, Zainab, called her team together to go through the information collected during a visit and interviews in Moniya Community. The community people were very enthusiastic about the project and they tried to be involved at all levels.

On the first morning of hygiene and sanitation training, a final call was made to the headman to alert him that we were on our way. When the team arrived here, people had already flocked to the scene of the training. The boombox was then plugged in to attract more people to the venue. It helped recruit more than 165 people from the community to attend.

The training was held in a very conducive atmosphere. This village is well vegetated with tall trees all over the place. The gentle wind quietly blew from every angle of the village. This supported positive atmospheric condition and it also reflected the participation level. The first day of training was held at the mosque’s compound. But the level of recruitment was more than this venue could accommodate. So the subsequent days of training were moved to under a large mango tree in front of the home of the eldest man in the village whose son started the well.

Zainab and her team taught about:

– tippy tap handwashing stations and handwashing

– differences between a healthy and unhealthy community
– dish racks and clotheslines
– proper care of the pump
– nutrition
– dental hygiene
– latrines

Most of the participants here were very comfortable with the pictorial method of training. The photos made it very simple for them to understand the message. This improved their participation level. They asked very interesting questions and gave brilliant answers to most of the questions from the instructors. Some even crafted stories in their response to certain questions.

"I was personally thrilled by the lesson taught on handwashing," Mr. Santigie Bangura said.

"We as country people do take it for granted. Here you can see an adult eating without washing his or her hands, especially during the mango season. The kids are even worse. Now we know that we have been slowly killing ourselves. This training will help us change our attitude towards handwashing.”

January, 2019: Moniya Community Project Underway

Dirty water from open sources is making people in Moniya Community sick. Thanks to your generosity, we’re working to restore water to a well and much more.

Get to know this community through the narrative 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

Hand-dug wells have been an important source of water throughout human history! Now, we have so many different types of water sources, but hand-dug wells still have their place. Hand dug wells are not as deep as borehole wells, and work best in areas where there is a ready supply of water just under the surface of the ground, such as next to a mature sand dam. Our artisans dig down through the layers of the ground and then line the hole with bricks, stone, or concrete, which prevent contamination and collapse. Then, back up at surface level, we install a well platform and a hand pump so people can draw up the water easily.

Giving Update: Moniya Community

November, 2019

A year ago, your generous donation helped Moniya Community in Sierra Leone access clean water – creating a life-changing moment for Isata Sillah. Thank you!

Keeping The Water Promise

There's an incredible community of monthly donors who have come alongside you in supporting clean water in Moniya Community.

This giving community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Moniya Community maintain access to safe, reliable water. Together, they keep The Water Promise.

We’re confident you'll love joining this world-changing group committed to sustainability!

Our field officers recently visited the well at Moniya community in Sierra Leone. They noticed a lot of changes in the community in the year since the project was completed.

"Since this project was completed, we have never strained for water in this village. The pump is constantly running for 1 year now with no problem as compared to the previous one. We no longer go to the swamp to fetch water and also the sickness rate has reduced drastically," said Isata Sillah.

When there was a shortage of water in the community, the villagers use to fetch water from the swamp for their drinking and domestic use. We noticed that is no longer the case. People here are not going to the swamp to fetch water.

Our field officers deliberately asked the question during the visit if people are still using the swamp.

"No!" he was told by someone fetching water at the well.

"Now we have realized that drinking water from an open well or swamp can expose us to so many diseases, so I cannot imagine that anyone from our village can do that.”

We also observed that the village has improved greatly in the area of water and sanitation. The change was obvious through the appearance of dishracks and tippy taps - tools that people here learned about during the hygiene and sanitation training conducted alongside the construction of the well. That training has been bolstered by the teachings and constant monitoring of our field staff.

Navigating through intense dry spells, performing preventative maintenance, conducting quality repairs when needed and continuing to assist community leaders to manage water points are all normal parts of keeping projects sustainable. The Water Promise community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Moniya Community maintain access to safe, reliable water.

We’d love for you to join this world-changing group committed to sustainability.

The most impactful way to continue your support of Moniya Community – and hundreds of other places just like this – is by joining our community of monthly givers.

Your monthly giving will help provide clean water, every month... keeping The Water Promise.


Project Sponsor - Jonah Development Corp.