This project was initially implemented by another partner, but is now monitored and maintained by The Water Project together with Mariatu's Hope.
When the Sierra Leone team arrived community members were utilizing other methods to gather water about two-tenths of a kilometer away from the community to meet all of their water needs. Because of this and the community’s practice of open defecation families were left suffering from cholera, dysentery, typhoid, malaria, respiratory and other preventable water related illnesses. During the teams’ stay community members assisted the team with the water project, made food for the team, provided any available materials and provided security over the water project during the night. The community members are also responsible for gathering a monthly well maintenance fee of $0.20 per household to help sustain the community's water source. Our partners's plan is to train communities to maintain water projects for sustainability. If communities slip back into a situation where they must rely on unimproved water sources, our donors' investment is compromised. To help prevent this occurrence, our partner engages communities to help in planning, managing and monitoring of the rural water supply. Most of the community members depend on fishing, faring and petty trading for their livelihood. The nearest school is located half of a kilometer away from the community and now students, teachers and administrative personnel all have access to safe, clean drinking water. Before leaving the community, the Sierra Leone team provided Counselor Kamara with a contact number in case the well were to fall into disrepair, become subject to vandalism or theft. In an effort to ensure project sustainability, our partner is also responsible for visiting the well site annually.
The Sierra Leone team had the opportunity to meet with twenty-nine year old fisher, Foday Buah Kamara, who stated, "The new water source is free from germs and it is chlorinated. The old water source is not pure. It has germs and has a taste and it is open to people defecating near it."
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.