Project Status

Project Type:  Borehole Well and Hand Pump

Regional Program: Port Loko, Sierra Leone WaSH Program

Impact: 300 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Nov 2021

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 02/01/2023

Project Features

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Kamara Street is one of the most known streets in the Masoila community. The once tree-filled community is now busy with new houses built every day. There are more two-story buildings now than ever before due to the lack of space. Houses are built very close to each other, with no room for additional structures.

The trees used to be of great help in containing the water during the rainy season. However, the lack of trees has caused soil runoff during the rains. The community added street gutters to divert all rainwater to the swamp at the lower end of Kamara street.

The primary well for people living here is located on the left side of the road leading to the lower half of Kamara Street. The responsibility of bringing water into the household rest solely on the children and women. Very early in the morning, one can hear the crowing of chickens to alert everyone in the community it is time to get up. Lines are started as early as 6 in the morning, with people coming from far to get a bucket of the early morning water reserved for drinking.

As a community, water challenges have increased in recent years. The main well that provides for 300 people in this area runs dry at various points throughout the year. The closest alternative water source is a hand-dug well with a hand pump that is opened to contamination because it has no perimeter fence to restrict animals like dogs and goats. The community used to have several hand-dug wells that provided water all year round, but many are open to contamination or no longer work due to climate change.

Here’s what we’re going to do about it:

Well Rehabilitation

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 that will ensure the well supplies water throughout all seasons.

As the team drills, 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 both 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.

These trainings 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.

Project Updates

11/29/2021: Lungi, Suctarr, #1 Kamara Street Well Rehabilitation Complete!

We are excited to share a safe, reliable water point at #1 Kamara Street 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.

Mariama Tarawallie collects clean water.

Mariama Tarawallie, a 56-year-old petty trader, said, "I am a widow who could not afford enough income to support my family. Spending money to get sufficient water was a great burden on me. Thanks to Mariatu's Hope and The Water Project, now I can fetch water without spending a lot of money. And now we can fill our containers with clean water to drink; it will reduce contracting waterborne disease."

Mr. Abubakarr Bangura - Representative from the Port Loko District Council.

Local dignitaries were happy to witness the dedication of the water project and applauded the effort to collaborate with the community. Everyone was pleasantly surprised to see how jubilant the community members were for reliable and safe drinking water.

Beatrice enjoying clean water!

"This water is safe and pure to drink that we children of this community were yearning for all this while. Mariatu's Hope and The Water Project has really helped to solve the constraints we used to face in terms of water. By drinking this water, which is a reliable and safe water source, I know I will be free from contracting diseases that are waterborne such as diarrhea, dysentery, or even skin conditions," said Beatrice C., 11.

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 18 meters with water at 12 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. 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!

"Good water is life because drinking contaminated water is a risk to my health. This water is safe. If I drink from it, I know I can be protected from contracting water sicknesses," said Mariama Tarawallie.

New Knowledge

Before conducting any hygiene training, we made repeated phone calls and visits to the local water user committee to better 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 multi-day hygiene and sanitation training. We then dispatched our teams to the agreed-upon location to hold the meeting.

Participants learn together.

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.

Participants learn about dental hygiene.

Fatmata Kalokoh, Rosaline Ngekia, Joseph Kamara, and Isatu Kamara led the training for 40 participants, 34 women and 6 men, several of whom were community-based leaders. The training was under a large mango tree that provided shade at a community member's home near the completed well. The water committee and community members that attended promised to pass along the information they learned to others.

Learning the importance of latrines.

The most memorable session was a discussion about good and bad hygiene practices. As the facilitator presented a poster showing a child defecating behind a house, everyone was alert and paying attention. Participants laughed. One woman tapped her friend on the shoulder and said, "This is what your child always does." She then explained to the group that her friend has the habit of allowing her child to defecate around the community. The guilty mother's facial expression told the story was true, and she made a promise to the community that she would change her behavior.

"I know there will be a change in my life. I will make sure I put all this training into practice, more especially washing my hands with soap and water after using the toilet. I want to thank the team for giving us this new knowledge on how to take care of ourselves, our food, and our environment," said Fatmata Kamara, a petty trader, 35.

Celebrating clean water!

Thank you for making all of this possible!

10/19/2021: Lungi, Suctarr, #1 Kamara Street Well Rehabilitation Underway!

A severe clean water shortage in Lungi drains people’s time, energy, and health. Thanks to your generosity, we’re working to install a clean water point and much more.

Get to know this community 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!

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.


Facebook Donations
North Dunedin Baptist Church
Team SPS Gives Back Charitable Fund of The Minneapolis Foundation
Lenovo employee match

And 1 other fundraising page(s)
18 individual donor(s)