Royema Missionary Church Secondary School Well Rehabilitation

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Sierra Leone

Water for Sierra Leone

Latitude 8.60
Longitude -13.17

289 Served

Project Status:

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Stories and Community Profile

This project is a part of our shared program with Mariatu’s Hope. Our team is pleased to directly share the below report (edited for clarity, as needed).

BACKGROUND:  From the Principal, “The Missionary Church of African Jr. Secondary School came into existence in 2002 as a result of the felt need of the Royema Community and its environs.  One of the reasons it was begun was to reduce the burden of the children traveling far distances to get an education.  Another reason was to avoid accidents.  

“Since the inception of the school, the school started making entries for the BECE (Basic Education Certificate Examination) when it was two years old.  It has been doing well up to this date.  The thing that will surprise you most is that it took second in the 2013 BECE public examination.

“The school roll for 2014/2015 is 154 students, with 94 boys and 60 girls.”  The principal states the school is facing some challenge including the need for the rehabilitation of the water well and toilet facilities, as the school has no toilets.  

From the principal, “The school and community are poor, have poor drinking water, therefore depend on hand dug local wells and the swamp water.  The community is made up of agriculturists, petty trading and some fishermen and women.”

SANITATION:  This school presently has no toilets at all. The students walk to a neighbor’s house when they need to ease themselves.  This is not the best set up.  We could do composting portable toilets.  These toilets would be set on a cement slab which would sit on top of a six to seven foot hole (pit).  We would introduce composting, rather than a pit latrine, type of a sanitation solution.  A make shift handwashing station could be set up outside of the latrines.  As they fill up, a new hole could easily be dug and the housing unit slid over on top of the hole. 

PRE-WELL REHABILITATION:  A Constitution for Water and Sanitation Committee is being formed using members of the school and community.  This committee will cover both the community borehole that was drilled and the school borehole.  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.  

A baseline survey was conducted and shows in addition to the school with a population of 94 boys and 60 girls, there is a community consisting of seventeen houses with 73 adults and 62 children.  Most houses do not have latrines.  Most do have a kitchen, a dish drying rack, a rubbish pit and a clothsline.  During our hygiene training, we will be addressing the open defecation.  It seems that it would be difficult as a community to feel good about the situation when your child is attending a school without toilet facilities.  

Prior to beginning the rehabilitation, the Ministry of Water Resources gave their approval for the rehabilitation of this well.  

WELL REHABILITATION TECHNICAL: This well was constructed by the African Muslim Agency in May of 2012. When the team arrived, the well was dry with a total depth of 49 feet.  The well had been non operational for the past two years forcing the students and community to fetch water from the stream and the swamp.

The team constructed four new casings. They put them into the well and dug the well to a new total depth of 61.3 feet with a static level of 48.9. The original wall was demolished and the old pad was repaired and a new wall and drainage was constructed. We were hampered a bit by heavy rains, but the overall the project went smoothly.

HYGIENE TRAINING: We use a Participatory Hygiene and Sanitation Training (PHAST) model. We conducted a 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 and 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’s also great to see the interaction of all 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, and 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!


Name:  Neneh A. Koroma, female student  Age: 13

Before I was starting to fetch water to the swamp and the water is not clean because we fetch the water from the roots of the tree and the water is not clean.  We did not have pure water to drink unless we brought water from our houses in a tuteak (1.5litre) bottle.  When we forgot to bring the water from home, we have to drink the water from the swamp because the community people also fetch water from the swamp.  But, with the help of The Water Project and Mariatu’s Hope, you have given us clean water to drink.  I will always remember you and about the good work you have done for us. May God continue to guide and protect you and let you never stop your good work.

Name:  Mustapha Sesay, male student  Age: 16

You have contributed a lot to improve our school by the water well and also made our teachers being specialists in hygiene. They teach us every day about hygiene and how to take care of the community and the environment.  Our teacher teach us about hand washing and she also learn us two songs.  One is “wash my hands, from the toilet” and the other is “Jesus loves me, wash my heart.” Thank you very much!!

Name: Daniel D.F. Kamara, male School Principal  Age: 49
Missionary Church of Africa Secondary School

Thank you very much to The Water Project and Mariatu’s Hope for the good work you have done for the school and the community. The old water source was not tasty and it also had a bad odor, but by then, there is no choice, so we have to make use of it.  The students missed the first learning period for them to go down to the swamp and fetch water. Some students when they went down to the swamp came back with their uniform dirty. So I want to say thank you to The Water Project and to the people who donated the money.

FINAL REPORT: The Constitution for Water and Sanitation Committee was formed joining members of the community with the school. Everyone is so excited about the development for this well rehabilitation. The teachers in the school have been training the children about the hygiene lessons. Prior to this, they had no real curriculum like what we’ve given them. The students were questioned about some of the key hygiene messages and they were able to answer and demonstrate how to properly wash their hands and could tell key times when they should do so. Several students remarked how thankful they were; they said they never had this kind of training before, and even they see that their teachers are excited when they are teaching them.

At the dedication ceremony, the Bible’s Jeremiah 29:11 was shared and prayed over the students and the community. “For I know the plans I have for you says the Lord.  Plans for good and not for bad. Plans for a hope and a future.” The students were remarking how they really feel hopeful for their future because they will have more time in school and their health will be better because of not drinking from the swamp. They are so grateful to God and say Bravo! Bravo! to The Water Project and their gracious donor.  They prayed back that God would increase the work that we are able to do for the people of Sierra Leone.

We are feeling very hopeful for this school and this community. They took the initiative to build this school out of mud blocks because there was a need in the community, and God blessed that endeavor. The teachers are very active, and the students really seem to appreciate what they have. We will continue to work with this school and the teachers to encourage them.

The next follow-up on the status of this well will be in December.

Project Photos

Recent Project Updates

12/08/2015: Royema Missionary Church Secondary School Project Complete

We are very happy to report that, thanks to your willingness to help, Royema Missionary Church Secondary School has a new source of safe, clean water. A broken well has been rehabilitated so that it is a reliable resource. The community has also been trained in sanitation and hygiene, and our partner in Sierra Leone will continue to work with this group as time goes on. We have updated the project page with the latest details and pictures of the finished project.

Take a look, and Thank You for helping us unlock potential!

The Water Project : sierraleone5067-58-complete

10/12/2015: Royema Missionary Church of God Well Rehab Underway

We are excited to announce that the Royema Missionary Church of God Primary School in Sierra Leone will soon have a new source of safe, clean water. A broken well is being rehabilitated so that it is a reliable resource. In addition, the community will receive training in sanitation and hygiene. Together these resources will go a long way toward stopping the spread of disease in the area. We just posted an initial report including information about the community, GPS coordinates, and pictures.

Take a look, and Thank You for your help!

The Water Project : sierraleone5067-15-pre-rehab

Monitoring Data

Project Type:  Well Rehab
Location:  Lungi, Royema, Sierra Leone
ProjectID: 5067
Install Date:  11/30/2015

Monitoring Data
Water Point:
Needs Repair
Last Visit: 07/17/2017
Well Depth:  61.30M


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:
12/31/2015 — Functional
02/12/2016 — Functional
04/11/2016 — Needs Attention
05/27/2016 — Functional
09/13/2016 — Needs Repair
09/14/2016 — Functional
11/28/2016 — Functional
02/22/2017 — Functional
04/19/2017 — Functional
07/17/2017 — Needs Repair


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.