Makonkonday Maternal Health Center Well Rehabilitation Project

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Sierra Leone

Well Rehab - Sierra Leone

Latitude 8.36
Longitude -13.01

200 Served

Project Status:

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Stories and Community Profile

Upon completion of the project, our partner in the field reports…

Community Details

Living Water Sierra Leone entered the rural area of Koya within the Western Rural District of Sierra Leone with a plan to restore water access to the country’s thirsty. Like many of the rural areas in this country, water access is limited, water quality is poor, and more than 48% of the people rely on open water sources such as swamps for their water needs. The 50-family community of Makonkonday and Makonkonday Maternal Health Centre also suffered this reality. According to the District Development Officer, there are a number of non-functional water wells in the area that would have otherwise provided safe and clean water for the people. Koya lies along the coast and there is a tendency for people to use the water or the coast for disposal of waste. The overall water situation in Makonkonday was similiar, and a community member shared about their secondary water source and stream, “The water we used to fetch from the open stream was not good for us because people use the stream for bathing and traditional ceremonies… It was impossible for us to go and draw water from the stream. The water used to be dirty and not fit for domestic use, but we had no choice.” Because of this, the availability of safe water has been a major issue of concern in this community. About 12 years ago a well was dug by the National Commission for Social Action (NaCSA), but the well was not fully completed and the community was never able to use it—initiating a cycle of hopelessness for the 50-family community of Makonkonday. Suffering for this community did not end with unsafe water and failed water attempts, but was perpetuated with uninformed and unsafe hygiene and sanitation choices. The Living Water Sierra Leone team shared, “Sanitation has been a problem [for this community] and there was no toilet evident in the community implying that the people have been using open spaces for defecation. Much as this community has [fortunately] not recorded a single case of Ebola, but they still feel the impact of the epidemic due to general restriction in movement, increase in prices of basic foods, living in constant fear, lack of security, and they can no longer work adequately on their farms.” To help alleviate the suffering here, the Living Water Sierra Leone team secured access to the community’s undeveloped well and established a four-person, interim Water Committee that will gather once the Ebola epidemic passes.

When the Living Water Sierra Leone team arrived to repair the well, it was dry and had to be redeveloped. The casing was damaged and had been separated from the well lining, which also needed to be repaired. The community was unable to physically assist the team because of precautions taken by the Living Water team to prevent contracting or spreading the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD). However, the community was enthusiastic about the team’s work and is committed to keeping safe water in their community indefinitely.

Hygiene Promotion

Using the LWI Traditional Method, which is a participatory method to help community members discover ways to improve their hygiene and sanitation choices and implement community-driven solutions, 15 people were trained. During this time, the Living Water team shared the following lessons with families: disease transmission, germs, healthy and unhealthy communities, hand washing-proper techniques and water-saving methods, latrine perception, diarrhea doll-causes of diarrhea, good bad hygiene behaviors, disease transmission stories, tippy tap and keeping the water clean. Included in the hygiene lessons was also information on Ebola to create awareness in the community on how they can prevent the spread of this epidemic. As the Ebola situation normalizes, Living Water staff will do an intensive training with the community using community approaches such as Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) so that the community can make significant changes in their hygiene and sanitation behaviors. The community of
Makonkonday will start with the construction of shared toilet facilities, and eventually each household will have its own toilet for use. Before leaving the community, the community constructed tippy taps that are accessible by the entire community and each tippy tap was constructed with the intent to be shared by multiple households.

Community Member Interview

“We have been struggling a lot to get water for use,” shared 32-year-old community member and small-scale farmer, Aminata. “The water we used to fetch from an open stream was not good for us because people use the stream for bathing and traditional ceremonies. There is also a huge snake believed to be part of ancestral spirit that at times made it impossible for us to go and draw water from the stream. The water used to be dirty and not fit for domestic use, but we had no choice. We have a maternal health unit but health workers were reluctant to stay because there was no water for use in administering first aid to the patients. With this new well, we now have access to clean and safe water! We no longer will suffer the menace of the snake at the stream. Since the well is located near the health clinic, it will be easy for patients to get first aid. Health workers will not struggle to go and fetch water and we believe they will be encouraged to stay in the community. Thank you for helping us.”

Christian Witness

Despite being an area where there are strong traditional beliefs, there were 70 people (16 men, 24 women and 30 children) who gathered to hear the gospel of Jesus Christ and over 40 people gave their lives to Christ! The people were encouraged to join the Holy Ghost Bible Church and the pastor present will continue to play a critical role to develop them in their faith. There is, however, a great need for more people to help disciple new believers so that they remain grounded in their faith. To do this, Living Water Sierra Leone will continue to work with the local pastor to support the church in their evangelistic work. They will be trained in leadership and integral mission so that they can have a broader view of missions and be better equipped to support the community. The church will continue to be encouraged to participate in development initiatives, by the Living Water team, while sharing the Good News. To further the gospel message, Living Water Sierra Leone will also provide materials and financial support for specific activities that are
aimed at reaching out to the community and surrounding communities with the JESUS film, oral Bible storying, Scripture reading and through evangelistic rallies. Material and finances will be provided for specific activities by the Church aimed at reaching out to the communities such as Jesus Film, evangelistic rallies.

Project Photos

Recent Project Updates

12/19/2014: Makonkonday Maternal Health Center Project Complete

We are excited to report that, thanks to your willingness to help, Makonkonday Maternal Health Center in Sierra Leone has a new source of safe, clean water.  A broken well has been restored and repaired and the community has been trained in sanitation and hygiene.  Together these resources will go a long way toward stopping the spread of disease in the area.  We just posted a report from our partner in the field including information about the community, GPS coordinates, and pictures.

Take a look, and Thank You for your help!

The Water Project : sierraleone5054-05-pumping-water

Monitoring Data

Project Type:  Well Rehab
Location:  Makonkonday Maternal Health Centre, Koya Sierra Leone
ProjectID: 5054
Install Date:  12/18/2014

Monitoring Data
Water Point:
Needs Repair
Last Visit: 12/08/2016
Well Depth:  12.00M


We are actively working with this partner to resolve the issues in this community. The "last visit" date is not necessarily the date we were notified by the partner of any potential problems. Once informed of downtime, we work to respond quickly. We will update the project status when these issues are resolved.

Visit History:
02/15/2015 — Functional
06/15/2015 — Needs Attention
08/27/2015 — Needs Repair
12/08/2016 — Needs Repair


Project Sponsor - The Well Church of Lewisvile

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Country Details

Sierra Leone

Population: 9.7 Million
Lacking clean water: 47%
Below poverty line: 70%

Partner Profile

Nearly 20 years ago, LWI set out to help the church in North America be the hands and feet of Jesus by serving the poorest of the poor. 600 million people in the world live on less than $2 a day. 884 million people lack access to safe drinking water.

In response to this need, LWI implements participatory, community-based water solutions in developing countries.

LWI is a former partner of The Water Project.