Project Status

Project Type:  Borehole Well and Hand Pump

Regional Program: Port Loko, Sierra Leone WaSH Program

Impact: 350 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Jan 2022

Functionality Status:  Functional

Last Checkup: 01/12/2024

Project Features

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"Day after day, groups of children are moving up and down in the community looking for a source of water. So far this year, we have a lot of dry wells in our community. I spend more time now waiting than the actual fetching. I end up visiting several water points during the day to have water at home," said Isatu, a 16-year-old girl.

The community members used to fetch water nearby, but the nearest well dried up years and years ago. So, in 2014, the mosque well was constructed. But the mosque well has had its own problems, ranging from minor mechanical breakdowns to water shortages. It is open to contamination, with only a broken-down fence to protect it.

"At any time a fence is broken down, it is a sign that the particular community has immediately increased their chances of contracting water-borne illnesses," said one of our field officers. "All [the] animals are there roaming about looking for scraps and water to drink."

In this community, all the people fetching water are either school-going children or housewives, so their best time to fetch is very early in the morning and just after coming home from school. But this means that, when people do queue up at the well, there are long lines awaiting them.

The rehab of this well is vital because of its ideal location to serve the lower half of Kamara Street.


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 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 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 teach 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 help solving a serious problem, like a pump breakdown.

Project Updates

January, 2022: Lower Kamara Street Mosque Well Rehab Complete!

We are excited to share a safe, reliable water point at Lower Kamara Street, Masoila in Sierra Leone is now providing clean water to community members! We also conducted hygiene and sanitation training, which focused on healthy practices such as handwashing and using latrines.

"Before, we were struggling to fetch water," said 38-year-old trader, Angelina Sesay. "We were only depending on the surface water dug hole at the swamp area to fetch water as our main source. This water was not pure to drink and cook [with] because it is open to contamination."

Angelina's speech at the well dedication ceremony.

"Now that our community water point has been rehabilitated, we can do all our domestic work on time," Angelina continued. "Today, the water challenge crisis is over, because the water point is looking better than before, and very protected. The water is very, very clean, safe, and pure to drink."

18-year-old Isatu K. explained why the rehabilitated well means so much to her and her community. "Before it was difficult for us to fetch safe pure water for drinking and cooking. Also, most times we school children struggled to launder our uniforms on time."

Isatu, in the red shirt, cups her hands beneath the flowing water.

"We now have enough water to launder, bathe, and for cleaning cooking utensils," Isatu continued. "We the school children will take the responsibility to clean our community water source every week on Sunday so that [our] water source [will] not be contaminated."

We held a dedication ceremony to officially hand the rehabilitated well over to the community. As a sign of how much they paid attention at the hygiene and sanitation training, community members constructed a handwashing station in front of the well and used it to demonstrate their new handwashing skills.

Councilor Abubakarr Bangura celebrates with community members.

The ceremony was attended by several local dignitaries from the Port Loko District Council, the Ward Council, and the Ministry of Water Resources. Each official gave a short speech thanking everyone who contributed to the rehabilitation of the water project. Then, Angelina and Isatu made statements on their community's behalf. The ceremony concluded with a lot of celebration, singing, and dancing.

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 17 meters with water at nine 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.

Community members assist with the yield test.

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 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 mosque to hold the meeting. We hosted four days of training, with an average of 71 people attending each day.

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.

The most engaging topic for the Lower Kamara Street group was disease transmission, during which they would sort posters showing how diseases spread in order. The topic inspired lively debate among the community members, some of whom accused others of bad practices like open defecation.

Training participants sorting the disease transmission posters.

The Imam, Pa Samba, called everyone to order and concluded the issue by testifying that all the houses around the mosque are guilty, because he has heard quarrels about these issues many times. He reminded everyone to take heed of the training, since being a Muslim means practicing cleanliness.

Another favorite topic of discussion and demonstration was handwashing. Competitions broke out between men and women of who could best wash their hands to the training's specifications. Imam Pa Samba said that, after the training, he will make sure worshippers use soap while performing their ablutions in the future rather than just using water as they had before.

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 our field officers to assist them. Also, we will continue to offer them unmatchable support as a part of our ongoing monitoring and maintenance program.

Thank you for making all of this possible!

October, 2021: Lungi, Masoila, Lower Kamara St Mosque Well Rehabilitation Project Underway!

A severe clean water shortage in Masoila 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

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!

A Year Later: Better Business!

January, 2023

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

Keeping The Water Promise

There's an incredible community of monthly donors who have come alongside you in supporting clean water in Masoila Community 6.

This giving community supports ongoing sustainability programs that help Masoila Community 6 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!

Before we rehabilitated the well in Masoila last year, people spent hours each day walking from well to well and waiting in long lines just hoping for a chance to fill their containers. Getting water was an arduous and thankless task.

"Before this time, we and [our] children were having a lot of constraints to fetch water," said 21-year-old trader Aminata Conteh, who also serves as treasurer on the water user committee. "There was a lot of waterborne diseases like cholera, diarrhea, etc. that [were plaguing] us."

But since the well near the mosque has been rehabilitated, fetching water is easier and the water is monitored and treated regularly, so no one has to suffer any longer from preventable diseases.

"Now we have pure and safe drinking water, and it is closer to our homes," Aminata said. "No waterborne diseases [will be] affecting us again."

Having access to water also has ripple effects that translate to success and happiness in other areas of life, too.

"I am [a] businesswoman," Aminata explained. "Before this project came, I normally went out late to the market [to] sell my goods, but with the well closer to my house, I now do my domestic work faster and go to the market [early]."

Aminata outside the well.

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 Masoila Community 6 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 Masoila Community 6 – 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 Underwriter - Wakillah
6 individual donor(s)