Boreholes

Giving Ughandi B Water

We began our project ten years ago in August 2005 after visiting Ughandi ‘B’ village in rural Tanzania. We returned home to discuss what would be the best way to help the community, the obvious choice was to install water pumps, there being only one working pump in the village to cover a population of a little below 3000. Ughandi ‘B’ has five sub villages and covers a vast area so we determined from this that a survey would be the best way forward. The communities of subsistence farmers grow crops such as maize and sunflowers during the long and short rain seasons, but the area is essentially semi dessert. They also have small herds of cattle, goats and local chicken. During my first visit I noted that often cattle would roam across farmers land and contaminate any hand dugs wells in and around the river bed. Many women and children were collecting water from such places for drinking. Whilst I knew we couldn’t deliver clean water to the whole of Ughandi ‘B’s’ population, I knew it was far better to do what was possible for the community than to turn our back on them. There began three years of fund raising which was something neither of us had undertaken before.

In 2007 we commissioned Sema to undertake a survey of Ughandi ‘B’ and its five sub villages to find two possible water sources. Abstraction of water through a borehole is a risky business so we felt it necessary to be present during this time. Two sites were found at Elimu and Maliasili sub villages. More money was raised through family, friends, churches and charities until by the end of 2007 we had enough put aside for drilling. Due to heavy rain drilling could not take place until January 2008; however both sites gave a good yield. Later that year we were able to purchase two hand pumps and in August 2008 exactly three years after we launched the project installation took place. Our representative at this time was Abraham Ng’eni who’s family live in the village.

A year later Richard and I returned to Ughandi ‘B’ and were able to see both pumps working. We set up a contract of trust giving the water ‘user group’ sole responsibility for maintenance of the pumps. Two pump attendants were appointed to collect money from the community to cover maintenance costs and attendants wages. However this was only partially successful and so in July 2011 we handed responsibility to the area chairman to see that contributions were collected for all three pumps to ensure that none goes into disrepair. At the same time we placed a plaque on Elimu and Maliasili pumps so that any group visiting the village in the future can see clearly who funded
them.

 

Report July 2012

Maliasili pump continues to work well and both pumps still retain the plaques we placed on them in 2011. Unfortunately there have been problems with Elimu pump near Muhuvi School. Maintenance was needed in September 2011 and in April of this year it broke down again. An account in Singida Town has enough money for repairs we think but in future the community must take ownership of their pumps to keep them working.

 

Report August 2012

Elimu pump has been repaired and the latest report shows that two members of the community are now taking responsibility for it. This includes collection of money from villagers for further repairs when needed.

 

Report January – July 2013

Elimu pump has remained in good working order since it’s repair a year ago. Maliasili pump broke down towards the end of 2012 and has since not been repaired. The reason for this is that no collections were made by people living nearby even though we had been given assurance that it would. Further more contributions towards the upkeep of Elimu pump were used by the village leadership to purchase reinforcement bars for the dispensary. However the bank account originally set up in 2009 still contains the equivalent of £50. We had hoped that yearly collections at both sites would enable some money to be banked for future maintenance, but due to part of the village not taking ownership this has not happened. A recent report says that the original pump (not installed by the project) has also failed leaving part of the village with no fresh water.

 

Report January 2014

We intend to visit Ughandi B in June 2014 having been unable to visit last year. In August 2013 Mr Abraham Ng’eni was able to oversee the repair of Maliasili bore hole on behalf of the project for which we are very thankful. Here is a link to the extensive report he brought back for us. We will be looking to see if the measures he put in place to raise funds for the upkeep of both bore holes has been adhered to.

Reinstatement of Maliasili Bore hole

 

During June 2014 we were able to spend a week in the village which enabled us to check on the pumps. The village committee assured us that contributions were being collected when we had our meeting with them in the community room.

Our meeting with some of the village committee

Our meeting with some of the village committee

Both Maliasili and the old village pump were now working, but during our stay Elimu pump broke down. I was able to speak with someone who lived close by and she told me that a neighbour had used it roughly to water her farm land. Later that day I saw the village secretary and he assured me it was a simple job to mend and that there was enough money to cover it.

A young girl fetches water from the reinstated old village pump

A young girl fetches water from the reinstated old village pump

Elimu pump broke down after it was used to directly water crops

Elimu pump broke down after it was used to directly water crops

Maliasili pump was still working well and our plaque was in place

Maliasili pump was still working well and our plaque was in place

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Elimu pump repairs November 2014

Elimu pump repairs November 2014

 

 

 

 

 

Pumped repared November 2014

Pumped repared November 2014

 

 

Richard setting off around the village via boda boda

Richard setting off around the village via boda boda

Richard’s mode of transport for getting around was quite useful. Just a few Tsh secured a Boda Boda.. nippy little things

 

The story of Elimu and Maliasili boreholes, from conception to completion.

The communities of subsistence farmers grow crops such as maize and sunflowers twice a year during the long and short rain seasons, but the area is essentially semi dessert. They also have small herds of cattle, goats and local chicken.

During my first visit I noted that often cattle would roam across farmers land and contaminate any hand dug wells in and around the river bed. Many women and children were collecting water from such places for drinking.

Four years ago we commissioned Sema to undertake a survey of Ughandi ‘B’ and its five sub villages to find two possible water sources.

Abstraction of water through a borehole is a risky business so we felt it necessary to be present during this time.

Two sites were found at Elimu and Maliasili sub villages, but granite rock required a diamond cutting machine. We used a company called DDCA.

Money was raised through family, friends, churches and charities until by the end of 2007 we had enough put aside for drilling.

Due to heavy rain drilling could not take place until January 2008; however both sites gave a good yield.

Community collecting water as the borehole is being flushed out.

Richard and I visited Ughandi ‘B’ (August 2009) and had the privilege of seeing both pumps working.

During our visit we set up a contract of trust giving the water ‘user group’ sole responsibility for maintenance of the pumps.

We watched as women and children filled bucket after bucket of clean water. It’s impossible to describe how that feels, but it makes all the time and effort we put into the project worthwhile.

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