Masoila Gateway Baptist Church and Primary School Well Rehabilitation



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Country:
Sierra Leone

Program:
Water for Sierra Leone

GPS:
Latitude 8.60
Longitude -13.19

Impact:
500 Served

Project Status:
Installed


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Stories and Community Profile

Ebola’s Impact

As you know, Ebola has been a tragic reality for the people of Sierra Leone over the last year. In the middle of this, we’ve remained more committed than ever to the people of Sierra Leone through a service and support program that focuses on keeping water flowing at approximately 100 previously installed projects. And, as you know, we’re also providing new water access for communities- made possible because of your support. Our teams have been brave and selfless – and we are so proud of them.

Very recently, Ebola has made a resurgence in our area of operation. Our team was providing service to a previously installed water point at a large regional hospital, and returned the next morning to find the entire area under quarantine. Unfortunately, this meant that many of our tools were also under quarantine. This, along with restoring some water points post-quarantine has led to reasonable delays in our program. We are very happy, after some delays, to bring this report to you.

We are in weekly contact with our team in Sierra Leone, and everyone is safe. The entire team continues to express their gratitude for your support of communities in Sierra Leone, and we can’t wait to celebrate safe water together!

BACKGROUND:

This well rehabilitation is at a church and a school that is part of the church. The church is an active Baptist Church. The pastor is Pastor Daniel A. Kamara. Pastor Kamara believes in doing his part for development. The church built the school back in the 1994 and it served as a community school. The well was dug in 1994 by IDA, which was a multi-system project and they used it without a pump utilizing a rope and a rubber. This development was in the early years of the war. When things began to get too much, school closed for a period of time until it was safe to re-open. In 1998, Oxfam, on behalf of UNICEF, came and rehabilitated the well and installed the hand pump. Throughout all these years, as the pump gave them problems they were able to pay a technician to come and repair it. Of late, the water table has dropped causing them to run low on water to serve both the community and the school. They had just completed building latrines for the school and church and didn’t have enough money to dig the well down deeper or replace the hand pump which had been repaired so many times, it was falling apart from overuse. They approached other organizations for help, but were denied. They asked the Ministry of Education and then requested assistance from us.

We know Pastor Kamara through the Lungi Evangelical Fellowship, a group of pastors we have worked with in the past. He is a very active, caring pastor with a gentle spirit. We were happy to assist him with this project because they have done so much development on their own of late with the construction of a six hole pit latrine for use by the school and the church. There are two holes for the boys, two holes for the girls and then one hole each for male and female teachers and church going adults. This was a wonderful addition for the church because their old latrines fell down. The pastor was telling us that when guests would come to visit the church and needed the use of a toilet they would be greatly embarrassed to say that they didn’t have a latrine for them to use. Now they can boast of both a new latrine and a rehabilitated water well. He was so excited about this development.

PRE-WELL REHABILITATION:

A Constitution for Water and Sanitation Committee was formed using members of the school, church and local community. This will ensure that the well and the hand pump are maintained. The constitution outlines the responsibilities of the community and the school in order to maintain order and good hygiene. Prior to beginning the well rehabilitation, the Ministry of Water Resources gave their approval for the rehabilitation of this well. A baseline survey and community water, sanitation and hygiene survey were completed.

Upon reviewing the surveys we noted a community population for this particular hand pump of 752 people, with 357 children and 395 adults. (Editor’s Note: While this many people may have access on any given day, realistically a single water source can only support a population of 350-500 people.  This community would be a good candidate for a second project in the future so adequate water is available. To learn more, click here.) We found that most houses had latrines of some sort. Some were more improved than others. It was quite shocking to see native toilets in a somewhat semi-urban area. Some homes have drying racks for their dishes, while others don’t. There was a lot of cases where the hygiene definitely could have been better. Most people do not have a rubbish pit and there is a lot of environmental waste. Most people have a clothesline. Most people had dirty water containers.

WELL REHABILITATION TECHNICAL:

The initial total depth of the well was 50 feet with a static level of 49.5 feet. Four new casing were made and allowed to cure. They were installed and sunk into the well. After sinking the casing, the total depth of the well was 54 feet with a static level of 38.8 feet.

HYGIENE TRAINING:

We use a Participatory Hygiene and Sanitation Training (PHAST) model. We coordinate our hygiene training using volunteers from Partners In Health because they have been trained on giving the key Ebola message. Ebola is still present in this country and it is important that we remain vigilant to continue to bring forth this message, in addition to the other hygiene lessons. The community knew the key messages of Ebola and how to prevent the spread.

From the survey, for the hygiene training, we plan to target the active use of a drying rack, talking about healthy and unhealthy environment, the good idea for a clothesline and proper water storage, including speaking to the water user committee about weekly washings on the water containers before fetching water.

Presently, Sierra Leone continues to be under a state of emergency and public gatherings are banned. We have been working with small groups of people and will continue in that vein until the ban is lifted.

We conducted a training of trainers participatory hygiene training with the teachers of the school.  They were joined by teachers from a neighboring school where we did another well rehab.  It was so great to get both schools together.  It’s great to hear the comments about what is common and uncommon at the different schools and communities and to hear the teacher’s ideas on how they would present the lessons to their students.  It is also great to see the interaction of the teachers.  Some of the teachers knew each other from attending the Port Loko Teachers College and some didn’t know each other.  Some were seasoned teachers, while some were younger teachers, so there was a really great mix.

The teachers were so excited. They each received a notebook with all the hygiene lessons which were theirs to keep. They were encouraged to take notes during the training.  Each school received a hard binding notebook with the lessons and laminated pictures for them to use in the classroom so they would stay in good condition.

After learning the lessons from the trainer, the teachers practiced presenting the lessons to each other and gave feedback. It was so much fun watching them do this part and hearing them give feedback to each other. There is so much to be said for doing this type of a training.

The teachers each received a certificate of participation.  Sierra Leoneans love to receive certificates to show their development. We love to develop teachers!

On the day of the dedicaiton of the well, which took place on the 31st of August because the rehab was completed while school was on their break, we met the teachers in their classrooms teaching the children the clean hands/clean heart song and also presenting some of the lessons with the pictures.  It was so encouraging and exciting to see the teachers in action.  We will continue to do follow ups with the school to be of encouragement to the teachers.  We will do refresher training as it is requested.

INTERVIEWS:

Three community people were interviewed.

1. Isatu M. Kamara, Female, Age: 25yrs, Occupation: Petty Trader

“For the past 10 years there was an issue with the water in Lungi but with the arrival of Mariatu’s Hope and The Water Project they have redeemed us from the pain and suffering of the water.”

2. Memunatu Deen Serry, Female, Age: 32yrs, Occupation: Teacher

“I can say that this season is the worst season of water in Lungi because before the well never went dry at the rainy season in previous years. This year they have had problems. So their school is not going to suffer any more by going to other community wells for their water. She says thank you to The Water Project!”

3. Rev. Daniel A. Kamara, Male , Age: 54 years,
Occupation: Head teacher and pastor at Gateway Baptist Church

“I remember the days at 1991 when the school was opening. There was a lot of problems with the water source like what they are having now. He is so thankful for the help of Mariatu’s Hope and The Water Project.”

We have included photos of the interviewees in the pictures below.

WELL DEDICATION:

The well was dedicated on a Sunday, the 19th of July, after the service. The pastor spoke at length about how much they appreciated both Mariatu’s Hope and The Water Project both during the service and then again outside as he was talking to the people who attended the dedication. He and the members of the congregation, school and community are eternally grateful for the intervention and support by The Water Project. Everyone was so excited and so happy. There were shouts of joy and much thanksgiving.

A couple of days after the well dedication, the well at our office water level dropped and we had to go to collect water from this particular well. The people were lined up and were so eager to fill our jerry cans with water for us. They stated how nice the water tasted and how quickly they were able to fill their containers with the newly rehabilitated well and new hand pump. Again, they were declaring their thanks!

SCHOOL WELL DEDICATION:

We returned to the school on the 31st of August, after the school break, to meet with the students to dedicate the well.  There was a pretty good group of students who returned to school on their first day.  It is not uncommon to have students not return to school on the first day back.  For many students, they wait until the first week of school is over and then they return.  When asked why they are not in school on that first day or even the first week, the students tell us, “There is no better learning.”  Some how, we can’t help but feel if all students returned they would see that indeed there is “better learning” and that learning is something that both the students and the teachers need to participate in.

We gathered the children and the students and some of the parents around the well and talked about how much they were loved by the people who sponsored this well.  Even though they had never met them, the sponsors cared.  We sang songs of thanksgiving for what God had done for them and shared a Bible story.

The students and the teachers of the school were so appreciative for this timely intervention. They have been good stewards in the past, and we expect the same will happen with what you have given to them.  They asked us to express their thanks and appreciating to The Water Project!  Tenke!

CHALLENGES: 

We had some water quality test kits that we used to make sure that the water was safe to turn over to the school.  Our test showed the water to be safe to drink with no bacteria.  The Ministry of Water Resources is supposed to come and test each well prior to turning it over to the beneficiaries.  However, we share the district lab and personnel with another district and with the Ebola they had some workshops and were very delayed in getting to the well to test the water and the community took over the well and started using it before the Ministry of Water Resources could get to them.  We are presently still awaiting their arrival.  Once we have a report from them, we will submit it.


Project Photos


Recent Project Updates


09/03/2015: Masoila Gateway Baptist Church And Primary School Project Complete

We are very excited to let you know that, having completed hygiene and sanitation training, the well rehabilitation project at Masoila Gateway Baptist Church and primary school in Kenya is complete. We just updated the project page with new information about the training and pictures.

Lots of smiling faces! Take a look, and Thank You for your help!


The Water Project : sierraleone5061-118-clean-water


08/04/2015: Masoila Gateway Baptist Project Almost Complete

We are excited to let you know that Masoila Gateway Baptist Church and primary school in Sierra Leone has a new source a safe, clean water. A broken well has been rehabilitated and is already serving the community.  But this project is not complete because our partner in the field has not yet trained the community in sanitation and hygiene.  This training will take place soon after school reopens August 31st. As soon as we hear back from our partner we’ll let you know. For now, check out the new information and pictures on the project page including information about the community, GPS coordinates, and pictures.


The Water Project : sierraleone5061-93


07/16/2015: Update From Sierra Leone

We wanted to keep you updated on the schedules in Sierra Leone. As you know, the Ebola epidemic has taken a serious toll there and our partner on the ground started later then anticipated due to travel restrictions.  Presently, projects have started and they are working hard gathering all the information to report back to us. We expect to have community names and initial reports by end of July.




06/23/2015: Well Repair in Sierre Leone

We wanted to keep you updated on the schedules in Sierra Leone. As you know, the Ebola epidemic has taken a serious toll there and our partner on the ground started later then anticipated due to travel restrictions.  Presently, projects have started and they are working hard gathering all the information to report back to us. We expect to have community names and initial reports by end of July.




Monitoring Data


Project Type:  Well Rehab
Location:  Lungi, Masoila, Gateway Baptist Church and Baptist Primary School, Airport Ferry Road
ProjectID: 5061
Install Date:  08/04/2015

Monitoring Data
Water Point:
Functional
Last Visit: 09/20/2017
Well Depth:  16.00M

Visit History:
12/30/2015 — Functional
03/21/2016 — Functional
05/30/2016 — Functional
09/13/2016 — Functional
09/13/2016 — Needs Repair
11/08/2016 — Functional
12/05/2016 — Functional
02/25/2017 — Functional
05/03/2017 — Functional
09/20/2017 — Functional




Contributors

Project Underwriter - St. Paul's Episcopal Church - PA
Yakima Foursquare Church
Mrs. Kushmer's Fundraising Page
2 individual donor(s)


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Country Details

Sierra Leone

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

Partner Profile

Mariatu’s Hope works with vulnerable communities and individuals to inspire hope through Maternal Care, Infant Nutrition, Safe Water Access, Proper Sanitation and Health and Hygiene promotion.