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The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Happy Students
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Hooray
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Principal With Students
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Smiles All Around
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Teacher And Students
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Drilling
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Drilling
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Drilling
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Drilling
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Drilling
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Drilling
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Drilling
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Drilling
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Bailing
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Bailing
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Chlorination
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Pad Construction
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Pad Construction
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Pad Construction
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Pump Installation
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Pump Installation
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Pump Installation
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Pump Installation
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Pump Installation Begins
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Yield Test
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Clean Water Flowing
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Finished Well
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Ready For Use
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Bad Hygiene Practices
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Community Hygiene
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Disease Transmission
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Handwashing Result
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Handwashing Technique
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Hygiene Practices
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Participant Handwashing
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Tippy Tap Construction
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Abubakar Bangura With Students
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Celebration
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Community Member At Well
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Councilor Philip Sankoh With Students
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Dancing
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Excited Students
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Fatmata At The Well
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Fatmata K Statement
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Osman Fofanah With Students
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Osman Fofanah
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  School Market Women Celebrating
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  School Market Women
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  So Much Easier
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Splashing
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Students And Teachers
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Margaret Kargbo Making Statement
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Student Carrying Water
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Student Carrying Water
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Main Well
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Student Carrying Water
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Student Carrying Water
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Water Storage Inside Classroom
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Volleyball Court
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Students Outside Classroom
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Students Outside Classroom
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Students Outside Classroom
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Students Inside Classroom
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Students Inside Classroom
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Students Inside Classroom
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Students Inside Classroom
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Students Buying Food
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Student Demonstrating Handwashing
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  School Stage
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  School Market Place
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  School Landscape
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  School Landscape
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  School Building
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  School Building
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  School Building
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Margaret Kargbo Principal
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Latrine
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Handwashing Station
The Water Project: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School -  Alusine M

Project Status



Project Type:  Borehole Well and Hand Pump

Regional Program: Port Loko, Sierra Leone WaSH Program

Impact: 576 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Sep 2021

Functionality Status:  Functional

Project Features


Click icons to learn about each feature.



The student population at St. Joseph Senior Secondary School is growing quickly. There are 576 students now, but it will soon reach more than 600 pupils in number.

The school began with the junior secondary unit in 2004, then came the need to expand. The parents and community stakeholders gathered, made a plea to the Catholic Mission for additional buildings, and added senior secondary school enrollment. The enrollment of senior secondary students started in 2007.

The school is within a large compound which can be accessed by different locations in Rotifunk and Masoila. Most of the homes around the school compound are the residences of airport workers, teachers, petty traders, and gardeners.

There are two water points in the compound for the junior and senior schools. The well near the junior school is not working, and the hand-dug well at the senior school is struggling as a combined result of supporting the two schools and from the effects of climate change. To alleviate the pressure on the two schools, we will rehabilitate the non-functional well at the junior secondary school and rehabilitate the well at the senior secondary school.

Climate change has caused the water table in this part of Sierra Leone to slowly drop in recent years. During the dry season, hand-dug wells struggle to provide enough water because they are no longer deep enough.

But we have a solution. By converting the well into a borehole, we will drill deep enough for the well to have plenty of water throughout the year – even in the dry season, and even if the water table continues to drop.

We will remove the pump, 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, which we know will also improve water quality. Once this plan is implemented, everyone within the school will have access to sufficient, safe drinking water, even through the dry months.

Our teams also identified gaps in the school’s hygiene and sanitation practices. The latrines are not adequately maintained, and there are other areas where we identified room for improvement. As a part of the well rehabilitation, our team will offer hygiene and sanitation training sessions for three days.

After our visit, the hygiene and sanitation trainer decided it would be best to teach the students and teachers how to build a tippy tap handwashing station with a jerrycan, string, and sticks. They will use these tippy taps for handwashing demonstrations. The school will also learn about topics including disease transmission, malaria prevention, and steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

This training will also strengthen the water user committee that manages and maintains this well. The committee enforces proper behavior and reports to us whenever they need help solving a serious problem, like a pump breakdown.

Project Updates


09/30/2021: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School Well Rehabilitation Complete!

We are excited to share a safe, reliable water point at St. Joseph Senior Secondary School in Sierra Leone is now providing clean water to students and neighboring community members! We also conducted hygiene and sanitation training, which focused on healthy practices such as handwashing and using latrines.

"I am today happy that the condition of the school pump has changed," said Fatmata K. a 16-year-old St. Joseph student. "The pump has been replaced, the fence is reconstructed, and there is safety at the well."

Fatmata at the well.

"It is now more reliable to drink from the well," Fatmata continued. "This will also help to prevent me from getting waterborne diseases. It is a better chance for me having good health, and this will also increase my regularity in school."

At the well's dedication ceremony, the school's principal, Margaret Kargbo, expressed her elation to have a reliable source of water for her students.

Margaret Kargbo celebrates with students.

"As the adage says, water is life," Margaret said. "This pump is a solution to the pressure that I had from my students at the school. It was hard on me when the school pump had broken down. Students became difficult to handle because they moved everywhere around the school campus searching for water to drink. It is their right to safe water. Today, I am happy that the school has gotten a safe and sustainable water source."

The ceremony was also attended by the school market staff and several local dignitaries from the Ministry of Water Resources, Port Loko District Council, and Ward Council. The market women recognize the new well as a way of boosting sales on the school grounds by better enabling them to cook meals for the students. Representatives from the different sectors made statements. Everyone sang, danced, and splashed in the water to celebrate the occasion.

Clean Water Restored

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

First, we raised the tripod, the structure we use to hold and maneuver each of the drilling tools. Next, we measured the well's original depth. We then socketed the pipes and installed a casing.

Finally, we lined up the drill rods and started to drill! We reached a final depth of 19 meters with water at 13 meters. The hand-drill method allowed the team to install the cylinder far below the aquifer so that the community has great water access throughout the year.

With drilling complete, we installed screening and a filter pack to keep out debris when the water is pumped. We then cemented an iron rod to the well lining and fixed it with an iron collar at the top. Next, we bailed the well by hand for three days and flushed it, clearing any debris generated by the drilling process.

Bailing.

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

As the project neared completion, we built a cement platform, walls, and drainage system around the well to seal it off from surface-level contaminants.

The drainage system helps to redirect runoff and spilled water to help avoid standing water at the well, which can not only be uncomfortable but unhygienic and a breeding ground for disease-carrying mosquitoes.

At last, we installed the stainless steel India Mk11 pump and conducted a water quality test.

The test results showed that this is clean water fit for drinking!

New Knowledge

Before conducting any hygiene training, we made repeated phone calls and visits to the school to better understand the community’s challenges and lack of sanitation facilities.

After this preparatory period, we scheduled a time when teachers and students could attend a multi-day hygiene and sanitation training. We then dispatched our teams to the agreed-upon location to hold the meeting. First, we trained the school's teachers, and then we held a follow-up training for the students.

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

"All this new knowledge I will implement in this school," said Principal Kargbo. "I will also teach my families about the new knowledge, especially in constructing the tippy tap and the nutrition aspect which comprises all the food nutrients in their correct proportion. All of these are important advice to follow if I want to live long and healthy."

The most memorable topic for students was dental hygiene, especially when one of the teachers, Mr. Joseph Fissa, shared a personal story. He said he had a horrible toothache experience that almost led to him losing his hearing in one ear. He cautioned the students and teachers to always take proper care of their teeth to avoid a similar situation themselves.

The students also loved learning about tippy taps and how easy they are to construct. Some students even rushed to the table to watch closely as the selected students carry out the construction.

Tippy-tap construction.

Many students rushed to wash their hands to explore this innovation. For some students, this was their first time seeing one-gallon containers transformed into handwashing stations.

Esther C., 16, the school's head girl, was especially interested in the topic of COVID-19. "The knowledge from this training will impact my life, the lives of my teachers, and the lives of my colleague students in various ways. This training has helped allay my fears and give answers to the many questions I use to ask myself. I am now aware of the COVID-19 transmission routes, preventive measures, and guidelines. Therefore, I am calling on my teachers, and fellow students to always remember to put this knowledge to practice, as it is for the betterment of all."

Thank you for making all of this possible!


The Water Project : mhsl21549-0-happy-students


08/10/2021: St. Joseph Senior Secondary School Project Underway!

A severe clean water shortage at St. Joseph Senior Secondary School drains students’ time, energy, and health. Thanks to your generosity, we’re working to install a clean water point and much more.

Get to know this school 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!


The Water Project : sierraleone21549-student-carrying-water-1


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.


Contributors

Stainless Flat Pack Pty Ltd
Vegaly
7 individual donor(s)