Project Status

Project Type:  Borehole Well and Hand Pump

Regional Program: Western Uganda WaSH Program

Impact: 450 Served

Project Phase:  In Service - Mar 2024

Functionality Status:  Functional

Project Features

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Community Profile

In Rubani, the closest clean water sources are more than a three-kilometer (1.86 miles) walk away. When community members finally arrive at either of the borehole wells available to them, they often find them overcrowded, which means waiting in line for their turn to fill their jerrycans.

These wells serve not just the people of Rubani, but the people of several surrounding communities - an estimated total of 1,000 people. But after all that time spent walking to the water source, community members have no choice but to stand and wait their turn, wasting time.

Because acquiring water takes such a long time, people get less of it. Without water to do essential daily tasks, people’s normal routines are disrupted, and important things like working and going to school are challenging. In fact, it would be difficult to find an aspect of life that isn't affected by this community's water crisis.

"We collect water from the borehole that is more than three kilometers away from my home," said 44-year-old farmer Livingstone Mugazi, shown above leaving the borehole, with a crowd of people still waiting for water behind him.

"I consider this borehole as my primary water source, but it is difficult to access because of the distance," Livingstone continued. "Sometimes I have to wake up early and go to fetch water, hence missing out on the garden (farm) work. This affects my daily plans, and it has affected [the] food production in our household. We spend money to buy water because there are times when one cannot go to the borehole. This is too costly. You find that the money which would have been used for development activities is spent on water."

"The water crisis also impacts our children's education because sometimes they miss school when there is no water to wash uniforms and bathe as well. Children have to rush from school and come back home to fetch water. Sometimes we fail to bathe and wash [our] clothes due to the scarcity of water. This affects our hygiene."

The poor hygiene caused by water scarcity affects young girls, too, in that menstruating becomes a lot more difficult when one can't keep themselves clean. Such is the case for 15-year-old Catherine A.

"I am a pupil at Kikingura Model School in primary five," Catherine said (she's shown above at the community's secondary water source, a dam, which is only used for washing and bathing).

"I started my periods while at school, and the senior woman teacher lectured me on MHM (Menstrual Hygiene Management): that I have to bath at least three times a day, especially before changing [my] pad, and for the days spent in school, my personal hygiene was well managed."

But the situation at home, where water is harder to come by, is more difficult.

"I always have challenges while at home during holidays because, to access water, I have to move about three kilometers away from [my] home, through the sugarcane plantations with a lot of fear that I might be raped by the sugarcane cutters. Besides, the water [we collect at home] is never enough since it's prioritized for preparing food only, making my menstrual hygiene an issue."

“Inadequate drinking water, sanitation and hygiene pose critical health risks to all children, but have additional implications for the health, psychosocial well-being and mobility of women and girls.” - UNICEF 

The people of Rubani need their own water source closer to home so that they can spend time doing what they need to live healthy, happy lives.

Note: Our proposed water point can only serve 300 people per day. We are working with the community to identify other water solutions that will ensure all 450 people in the community have access to safe and reliable drinking water.

Here’s what we’re going to do about it:

New Borehole

This new borehole is an exciting opportunity for this community! We work with the community to determine the best possible sites for this well.

We conducted a hydrogeological survey and the results indicated the water table is an ideal candidate for a borehole well. Due to a borehole well's unique ability to tap into a safe, year-round water column, it will be poised to serve all of the water needs for this community, even through the dry months.

Community members will help collect the needed construction materials such as sand, rocks, and water for mixing cement. They will also provide housing and meals for the work team, in addition to providing local laborers. We will complement their materials by providing an expert team of artisans and drilling professionals, tools, hardware, and the hand-pump. Once finished, water from the well will then be used by community members for drinking, handwashing, cooking, cleaning, and much more.


Training’s main objectives are the use of latrines and observing proper hygiene practices since these goals are inherently connected to the provision of clean water. Open defecation, water storage in unclean containers and the absence of hand-washing are all possible contaminants of a household water supply. Each participating village must achieve Open Defecation Free status (defined by one latrine per household) prior to the pump installation for this borehole well.

This social program includes the assignment of one Community Development Officer (CDO) to each village. The CDO encourages each household to build an ideal homestead that includes: a latrine, a handwashing facility, a separate structure for animals, a rubbish pit and a drying rack for dishes.

We also implement the Community-Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) approach with each of our village partners. This aims to improve the sanitation and hygiene practices and behaviors of a village. During these sessions, village leaders naturally emerge and push the community to realize that the current practices of individual households – particularly the practice of open defecation – are not only unhealthy, but affect the entire village. CLTS facilitates a process in which community members realize the negative consequences of their current water, sanitation and hygiene behaviors and are inspired to take action. Group interactions are frequent motivators for individual households to build latrines, use them, and demand that other households do the same.

Improved Sanitation

The aim is that all households own an improved latrine. Many households do not use a latrine but use the bush. Due to open defecation, feces are spread all over the village. This leads to waterborne diseases and contamination of groundwater and surface water. Our aim is that the community is able to live a healthy life free of preventable diseases. We endeavor that at the end of our presence in the community, people will have both access to sustainable, clean water and access to sanitation. We have now organized families to form digging groups for latrine construction, and empowered them with tools to use.

Project Updates

March, 2024: Rubani Community New Well Complete!

A new borehole well was drilled in Rubani Community, Uganda, and it is already providing community members with clean, safe water! Additionally, we hosted a training where community members worked together to make a development action plan for their area. As a result, families are working to build new sanitation and hygiene facilities, tools, and habits that will help improve their living standards and enable a healthier life.

"I'm able to drink safe water now, use it for cleaning utensils, cooking food and washing clothes, uniforms inclusive. Through safe water, my health and hygiene will greatly be improved," said 13-year-old Innocent.

Innocent pumping clean water.

New Borehole

We worked with the community to determine the best site to drill this new well. We confirmed the site's eligibility by conducting a hydrogeological survey, which proves that the water table belowground is at a sustainable level before drilling begins.

Several households volunteered to host our team of drilling technicians, giving them a place to sleep and food to eat throughout their work. Many community members also came to the work site each day to watch the drilling and see the well come to life.

When it came time to build the cement well pad, community members found fine sand and water to mix the cement. After the cement platform dried, we installed a stainless steel Consallen pump, which is now flowing with clean, safe water!

"It is easy now to collect enough water for domestic use and my pigs because of reduced distance, no overcrowding, and no more fighting that even if I send my grandchildren, I'm not scared that they will be bullied by sugarcane laborers who frequent the previous water point," said 62-year-old farmer Evalyne Nyandera.

Evalyne pumps clean water.

Evalyne shared her plans to expand her piggery [and] chicken project and concentrate on farming so she will have enough food for her family. She has also joined the savings group, where participants can borrow money to help meet their needs.


The self-help group associated with the project was set up, and training was begun in advance of selecting this project.

The first training session focused on financial planning. We mobilized the community through a series of meetings that sensitized them on the importance and purpose of saving. This included meetings dedicated to creating a community profile, where participants map the physical environment and stakeholders in their own community. We also ran a participatory vulnerability capacity assessment exercise. In this session, community members mapped out their shared risks and opportunities, including the water point breaking down.

Participants learning. This is a representative photo from a similar Self-Help Group training in Uganda.

Next, we scheduled the savings group training date with the community. We planned for a one-day training to form the savings group and discuss the best practices for maintaining and managing it.

We worked with the community to establish a Village Savings and Loan Association (VSLA) and a water user committee. The savings group set up a fund to provide small loans to each other and another fund they will use to pay for any repairs to the well if an issue arises. The group also agreed on a social fund that will provide grants to fellow group members and help them with funeral expenses or catastrophes such as fire damage. Our teams will provide follow-up training to support putting the savings group into practice while also offering continuous coaching in records management.

Participant engagement is key. This is a representative photo from a similar Self-Help Group training in Uganda.

Additional training sessions will happen in the near future focused on hygiene and sanitation at the personal, household, community, and environmental levels. In collaboration with the community facilitator and local leaders, we will train households on critical hygiene and sanitation facilities to build. These include latrines, dish racks, refuse pits, handwashing facilities, and bathing shelters. Our teams monitor these facilities' construction while helping the community learn how to best use and care for them.

Finally, we will lead an additional training for local artisans to teach them how to fabricate and sell locally used and accepted sanitation products that allow for more hygienic and accessible latrines.

Just as with the financial training, we will continue to support the community in their sanitation and hygiene progress through monitoring visits. In addition, we will offer follow-up assistance and refresher training to ensure community members follow through in building their new facilities and developing new habits.


This project required a substantial collaboration between our staff, our in-country teams, and the community members. When an issue arises concerning the well, the group members are equipped with the necessary skills to rectify the problem and ensure the water point works appropriately. However, if the issue is beyond their capabilities, they can contact their local field officers to assist them.

Also, we will continue to offer them unmatchable support as a part of our monitoring and maintenance program. We walk with each community, problem-solving together when they face challenges with functionality, seasonality, or water quality. Together, all these components help us strive for enduring access to reliable, clean, and safe water for this community.

With your contribution, one more piece has been added to a large puzzle of water projects. In Kenya, Uganda, and Sierra Leone, we're working toward complete coverage. That means reliable, maintained water sources within a 30-minute round trip for each community, household, school, and health center. With this in mind, search through our upcoming projects to see which community you can help next!

Thank you for making all of this possible!

February, 2024: Rubani Community New Well Underway!

The lack of adequate water in Rubani Community costs people time, energy, and health every single day. Clean water scarcity contributes to community instability and diminishes individuals’ personal progress.

But thanks to your recent generosity, things will soon improve here. We are now working to install a reliable water point and improve hygiene standards. We look forward to sharing inspiring news in the near future!

Project Photos

Project Type

Abundant water is often right under our feet! Beneath the Earth’s surface, rivers called aquifers flow through layers of sediment and rock, providing a constant supply of safe water. For borehole wells, we drill deep into the earth, allowing us to access this water which is naturally filtered and protected from sources of contamination at the surface level. First, we decide where to drill by surveying the area and determining where aquifers are likely to sit. To reach the underground water, our drill rigs plunge through meters (sometimes even hundreds of meters!) of soil, silt, rock, and more. Once the drill finds water, we build a well platform and attach a hand pump. If all goes as planned, the community is left with a safe, closed water source providing around five gallons of water per minute! Learn more here!


JBP 's Campaign for Rubani Community
1 individual donor(s)