Project Status

Project Type:  Dug Well and Hand Pump

Regional Program: Western Uganda WaSH Program

Impact: 300 Served

Project Phase:  Decommissioned

Project Features

Click icons to learn about each feature.

People in parts of Alimugonza Community travel up to a mile to access water from an unsafe, open source. The water is gathered in plastic jerricans and used for drinking, washing, and cooking.

Surface runoff from nearby farms contaminates the water, putting community members at high risk of contracting waterborne diseases.

"I am 68 years old," Mr. Bodongo Kasaino said

"All these years we have been taking water from this unprotected well. As a result, we faced many challenges. My child died due to acute diarrhea. My neighbor's child narrowly survived drowning in the well and typhoid is rampant in our village due to this unsafe water."

More than half of households have pit latrines which mean open defecation is still an issue in this community. There is some knowledge in the community about improved hygiene and sanitation from training conducted 5 years ago.

Most people here are peasant farmers. It is the rainy season in Masindi and this is the time when people are mostly planting their crops. During this season they go to gardens and return home around midday. They rest and eat lunch with their children who come back home from school.

Thereafter some go back to the garden to work until late in the evening. The men tend to go for social activities while women remain home for household chores. The men come back later to eat dinner and sleep.

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


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 a shallow hand-dug 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, hand-washing facility, a separate structure for animals, rubbish pit and 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 the latrines and demand that other households do the same.

New Hand-Dug Well

With the guidance of our artisans and mechanics, the excavated well will be cased, sealed with a well pad, and then finished with a new AfriDev pump. The community will participate in excavating and constructing the water source.

Excavation takes a month or more on average, depending on the nature of the rock beneath. Construction of the well lining and installation of the pump takes on average 12 days.

This well will be located in Katugo Community and will bring clean water closer to families having to walk long distances for their water.

We are also constructing one more hand-dug well and rehabilitating two existing wells for the community to ensure everyone has access to safe water! Learn more here and here.

Note: We do not have the precise GPS coordinates for this project at this time, but will update as soon as possible.

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

November, 2018: Alimugonza Community Project Complete

Water is now flowing from a new hand-dug well in Alimugonza Kyaflorence, Uganda. People are thrilled about this development that has further unified the community. People also attended hygiene and sanitation planning sessions and financial training, and have learned a lot that will enable them to live healthier lives.


All community members in the village were mobilized through the local leaders, who informed them of our training plans. More than 31 community members were able to attend the meetings and actively participated in identifying problems and coming up with solutions.

Community members not only mapped hazards in their area, but came up with an action plan to prevent further issues. This encouraged household leaders to build new facilities at home, such as latrines and handwashing stations. Discussions helped these household representatives work out how to best prevent diseases by building new sanitation facilities, treating their water, and adopting other hygienic daily habits.

Group discussions

Another day of training was dedicated to a Village Savings and Loan Association. The money saved will be dedicated to the community's overall development and well-being, with money first and foremost set aside to care for the community's new clean water source. Participants voted on a committee that will oversee the savings program and their new clean water point.

"Today's analysis of our community and the problems affecting us as members in the same village has triggered me and my fellows to think of ways to work together to solve community problems," shared Mr. Ely Ochil.

"Looking at poor sanitation in our community is not one person's responsibility but everybody's responsibility. So, to have better sanitation we need a joint effort."

Mr. Ochil and several of his neighbors enjoying a lunch break during training.

Hand-Dug Well

Construction of this new well was a big success!

We have updated the GPS coordinates of this project to show the well's location.

It took about a month of work to finish this well. The most important part of this process was our collaboration with the community, who helped our technicians immensely in excavating the well itself.

The technicians and community volunteers first hit water at 20 feet. This required more volunteers to come to help the diggers to bail water so they could continue. Concrete rings were lowered to help support the walls since the diggers were contending with loose, collapsing soil.

Once the team reached a sufficient depth, the technicians lined the well with bricks and mortar. This was reinforced and finished off with a well pad at ground level to protect the quality of water inside the well.

The committee met the pump mechanics to oversee the installation of a new stainless steel Consallen pump. They were given contact information for all of our trained hand-pump mechanics in the area. They look forward to receiving technical assistance whenever they need it!

"I have been in this village for 30 years. I always fetched water from our oldest open water source - the same source my parents used," remembered Mr. Bonifaso Wamani.

"I thought we would never get protected, clean water for drinking, but today I am seeing history change!"

October, 2018: Alimugonza Community Project Underway

People in parts of Alimugonza Community travel up to a mile to access water from an unsafe, open source. Thanks to your generosity, we’re working to install a clean water point nearby and much more.

Get to know your community through the narrative and pictures we’ve posted, and read about this water, sanitation and hygiene project. We look forward to reaching out with more good news!

Project Photos

Project Type

Hand-dug wells have been an important source of water throughout human history! Now, we have so many different types of water sources, but hand-dug wells still have their place. Hand dug wells are not as deep as borehole wells, and work best in areas where there is a ready supply of water just under the surface of the ground, such as next to a mature sand dam. Our artisans dig down through the layers of the ground and then line the hole with bricks, stone, or concrete, which prevent contamination and collapse. Then, back up at surface level, we install a well platform and a hand pump so people can draw up the water easily.