Samuya village is home to Susu Gospel Primary School. The community is divided into three sections with houses built in different directions with the headman's home smack in the middle. Large trees overhang the land, creating a shady environment and places to hide from the hot sun. A visitor is always greeted with freshly picked fruits or vegetables this time of year. The presentation of fresh produce to guests is a gesture that has been practiced for years.
Susu Gospel Primary School was built in 2005 by Reverend Sesay, one of the Susu Gospel School system's founders. It started with a little less than one hundred students, with most of the students being boys. The first headteacher was the late JJ Williams. The school is known around the chiefdom as having brilliant students that perform extremely well on exams.
The well on the school grounds was constructed in 2010 to help improve the school's condition. The school saw an immediate increase in enrollment for both boys and girls. Today, the school boasts 426 students. The school has benefitted greatly from the well. Without it, they would not have a source of clean and safe water. Over the years, however, the well has experienced challenges due to the effects of climate change. A decreasing water table is impacting the quality of the well's water and contributing to frequent breakdowns.
When the well does not work, the students have to turn to an open water source to try to fulfill their school's water needs. The open source is contaminated from the runoff of nearby roads and farms, placing the students at risk of contracting waterborne diseases.
Rehabilitating the well and digging it deeper will once more ensure that safe drinking water is available throughout the year. Furthermore, the upgrades to the well will reduce breakdowns, thus preventing the students from needing to rely on unsafe water points - like the open source.
Here’s what we’re going to do about it:
The well marked for this overhaul is dry for a few months every year and needs major work to supply adequate, clean water to the community year-round. The pump will be removed, and a hand auger will be lowered inside and powered by a drill team. This hand auger will allow the team to drill several meters deeper to hit a sufficient water column to ensure the well supplies water throughout all seasons.
As the team drills, the casing will be installed, transforming the bottom of this hand-dug well into a borehole. PVC piping will connect this lower system directly to the pump, a construction that we know will also improve the quality of water.
Once this plan is implemented, everyone within the community will have access to safe drinking water in quality and quantity, even through the dry months.
Hygiene and Sanitation Training
There will be hygiene and sanitation training sessions offered for three days in a row.
After our visit, the hygiene and sanitation trainer decided it would be best to teach community members how to build a tippy tap (a hand-washing station built with a jerrycan, string, and sticks). They 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.
This training will also strengthen the water user committee that manages and maintains this well. They enforce proper behavior and report to us whenever they need our help solving a serious problem, like a pump breakdown.