Upon completion of the project, our implementing partner reported from the field...
When the Sierra Leone team arrived, community members were utilizing an unprotected hand dug well located two-tenths of a kilometer (.02) away from the community to meet all their water needs. Because of this and the community’s practice of open defecation the families were left suffering from cholera, dysentery, typhoid, malaria, respiratory and other water related illness. During the team’s stay, a water committee of three men and four women assisted the team with the water project, provided food, any available materials, and provided security over the water project during the night. Most of the community members earn a living by working as nurses, petty traders and tending to the garden. The nearest school is located two-tenths of a kilometer away from the community, who students, teachers, and administrative personnel have access to safe, clean drinking water. Before leaving the community, the team provided community member Mariatu Koroma, with a Mariatu's Hope contact number in case the well were to fall into disrepair, become subject to vandalism, or theft.
The team had the opportunity to meet with forty year old, business woman/petty trader Jestine Jabatie and who stated, "The old water source is too far unless they fetch water at the Lumpa Health Post. That well is used by the nearby community and the patients at the health post. This area has a lot of water constraints. There are many open wells and there is a lot of sickness and strain for clean, pure water. Now with this new hand pump we have access to clean pure water."
During the hygiene education, the Sierra Leone team addresses; Hand washing, how to properly transport and store water, disease transmission and prevention, how to maintain proper care of the pump, as well as signs and symptoms of dehydration and how to make Oral Rehydration Solution. All of these lessons are taught in a participatory method to help community members discover ways to improve their hygiene and sanitation choices, and implement community driven solutions. After hygiene education, community members constructed a fence around the well site to keep livestock and wild animals away from their clean water source.
The community prayed with the team prior to beginning the project. The pastor, Daniel Kamara, from the Baptist Church in the community is very active in community discipling. Before leaving the community, the team passed out forty (40) bibles to the community and a bible story was told at the well dedication. The people were receiving Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.