Sponsor a water project
We believe that one of the greatest differences we can make in Africa is in providing sustainable access to clean water to rural communities in need. As you read the real life success stories below, you will understand why and how we undertake our Village Water Projects, and you will also discover how you can help to save and improve lives through the gift of clean water. Since 2009 our team has completed 32 successful Village Water Projects, which have served more than 5,700 people.
Because there is a lack of clean water in many rural villages in Africa, diseases transmitted through unclean water are a leading cause of preventable illness and premature deaths, with children being particularly vulnerable. According to the World Health Organization, nearly a million people die each year as a result of unsafe drinking water, with about half of those being children, whose deaths are preventable (fs 330/391). In addition, during the dry season, hundreds of collective hours can be spent each week in transporting this unclean water, by hand, from surface water sources such as rivers and swamps to the villages; this same time could be spent doing more productive activities, such as attending school or growing crops.
The partnership effort to install a well in each village immediately improves the health and well-being of everyone in the village, even saving lives. In addition to health benefits and resulting increased productivity, the local water source allows for a reallocation of time toward more productive activities, as well as allowing for cultivation of vegetable crops throughout the year through irrigation. It can also provide a source of revenue that will be used to increase the quality of life in the village, including education, medical care, and access to technology.
MORE THAN WATER?: Yes, clean water makes an extraordinary difference from the moment the first bucket of water is pumped. But as we have worked in partnership with the communities it has become very evident to us that it isn’t just about water. It is about participatory community development, empowerment, and sustainability, all based on sharing concepts of self reliance, economic cooperation, and proactive improvement for the common good of all members within the village. That’s why our Community Development System is so vital to the success of a Village Water Project. Before we take any steps to dig or drill a well, the community must first take steps toward organizing their Water and Sanitation Committee, and they must appoint a treasurer and secretary who will oversee the collection of a Well Fund, which is kept in the community exclusively for the purpose of maintaining the water system after we have installed it. Four men and four women are appointed to be trained on the complete disassembly, reassembly, and repair of the AfriDev hand pump, so when a breakdown occurs, there is found within the community the knowledge, ability, and money to immediately undertake the repair. Not only does this ensure that the well will be able to sustain the water needs of the community over time, it is a springboard to other development within the community, based on economic cooperation and functioning service committees.
HOW WE WORK: We are always prepared to undertake the next Village Water Project, and invite sponsors to finance as many clean water wells as possible! The process of bringing clean water to rural villages in Liberia costs about $3,500 per Village Drill bore hole, or $3,000 per hand dug well (Liberia). Either option includes:
- community development training focusing on economic cooperation and self-reliance
- hydrogeological surveying to determine the location of ground water
- transport of rig and drilling of bore hole or hand digging the well
- installation of pipes, walls, foundation and hand pump
- training of village water committees on how to use and maintain the pump
- hygiene and sanitation training
- on-site project supervision
- post-installation follow up and community development training
- all labor and materials