Conclusion of Choya, Si Kunda, and Kalikajara Pump Project – The Gambia
This project has been completed under the direction of Peace Corps Volunteer Jeremy Mak. To read about the beginning of the project, CLICK HERE.
This project was designed to secure access to clean water for Choya, Si Kunda, and Kalikajara Villages by installing 3 Blue Pumps. Although the beneficiary communities changed over time, the result was another remarkable success.
I want to let you know that three (3) new Dutch Blue Pumps were installed in Choya, Medina Wallom, and Brikama Lefaya. Fairwater's partner, Swe-Gam, installed them.
Fairwater Foundation was able to offer both Si Kunda and Kalikajara only one Blue Pump each to spread the beneficiary area. Although this was clearly stipulated to their village leaders in our initial meeting with them and that they originally agreed and welcomed receiving one hand pump each, the village chiefs declined the pumps. They insisted that they would only accept two pumps each, because they were worried about having a long wait time with just one pump. While I hate leaving communities to draw water from open wells, with such a short time period left, I had no choice but to defer to willing villages, lest I risk losing the three donated Blue Pumps (each valued at more than $2,500).
While I was unable to help Si Kunda and Kalikajara this time, Choya, Medina Wallom, and Brikama Lefaya were each experiencing acute water problems prior to installation of the Blue Pumps. You may recall that in a prior Water Charity project, I rehabilitated Choya's one surviving Mark II pump. But even with that one in working order, with 380 people depending on it, water security was at risk. By supplying a second and more robust pump, we were able to significantly reduce women's pumping and waiting times.
At Medina Wallom, the whole community depended on one Mark II pump. The Blue Pump replaced the residents' second Mark, which broke down last year, severely affecting their dry season gardening. Now, the community has two pumps on which to rely to grow early season bitter tomato, which is their cash crop.
At Brikama Lefaya, 40 residents relied on one Mark II to supply all their domestic water needs, gardening, and cattle watering. By replacing their Mark with a Blue Pump, the higher water output better enables the community to meet all their water demands. Before, women needing to water their gardens in the evening would have to wait extensively so that the cows could drink.
The beneficiaries of this project are:
- Choya = 380
- Medina Wallom = 115
- Brikama Lefaya = 40
With some leftover funds for new parts and by recycling some old parts from decommissioned Mark II's, I plan to repair four more Mark II hand pumps in the following communities before I leave:
- Medina Wallom (new handle bearings and axle)
- Demba Kunda (new handle bearings)
- Pinai (new handle bearings, new cylinder seals, new pipe seals)
- Kaani Kunda Suba (new handle bearings, new cylinder seals, replacement chain, replacement handle)
We wish to thank Jeremy for completing this terrific project, and again extend our gratitude to the SLOW LIFE Foundation for providing the funding.