Noo-Kunda and Farato School Water Projects – The Gambia

Noo-Kunda and Farato School Water Projects – The Gambia

This project is made possible through the partnership of WATER CHARITY and the NATIONAL PEACE CORPS ASSOCIATION.NPCA and WC logos

Location
Noo-Kunda: Noo-Kunda Lower and Upper Basic School, Noo-Kunda Village, Upper Badibu District, North Bank Region, The Gambia, West Africa

Farato: Farato Nursery School, Farato, Kombo Central District, Western Division, The Gambia, West Africa

Community Description
Noo-Kunda: Noo-Kunda is located on the North Bank of The Gambia, about 40 kilometers from the regional town of Kerewan. The village is populated by 2500 people, mainly from the Mandinka tribe, and tends to depend solely on subsistence farming. In recent years, the village has attracted some Fula migrants from Northern Senegal searching for grazing land. Noo-Kunda was one of the first villages in the Badibu region of The Gambia to open up to western education in the 1960s.

The Noo-Kunda Primary School was built in 1963 through a community-led initiative called “Tesito.” The building consisted of only two classrooms made out of mud and thatch roof. Back then, the school was only for the sons of Chiefs and other prominent people within the community. A few years after independence from Britain, in 1965, education was decentralized in The Gambia. Last year, the school was upgraded to an Upper Basic School, with students coming from four neighboring villages: Burangya, Minteh Kunda, Conteh Kunda, and Daayi village.

The school enrollment is 513 students, of which 263 are boys and 250 are girls. The school also has an early childhood education center for children 6 years old and younger. It has a strong and energetic school management committee, which strives toward high enrollment, with particular attention to enrolling female students.

Noo-Kunda and Farato School Water Projects - The Gambia   Noo-Kunda and Farato School Water Projects - The Gambia

Noo-Kunda and Farato School Water Projects - The Gambia   Noo-Kunda and Farato School Water Projects - The Gambia

Noo-Kunda and Farato School Water Projects - The Gambia   Noo-Kunda and Farato School Water Projects - The Gambia

Farato: Farato village was settled in 1951 in the Kombo Central District of Western Division. Farato has an approximate population size of about 21,000 people, made up of diverse ethnic groups: Fula, Mandinka, Wolof, Sarahule, Serer, Laobe, etc. Until relatively recently, Farato’s dominant economic activity was subsistence agriculture As the population gradually increased, land for crop production became scarce as the soil became less fertile; this shifted the community to dependence on business activity such as wholesale, retail, petty trading, different types of manufacture, transportation, etc.

A more urban lifestyle stemming from the capital of Banjul is rapidly spreading to the neighboring Kombos (Kombo North, Kombo South, Kombo Central, and Kombo East). This has contributed to a sprawl of market activity and land disputes as people build into the bush and in closer proximity to one another. As a result, the Kombos are overpopulated and underserved.

Farato Nursery School serves 68 Early Child Development students, of which 36 are girls and 32 are boys. The school is divided into three class levels of 20-24 students each based on their place along the “Early Child Development” range of what we call “Kindergarten.”

Noo-Kunda and Farato School Water Projects - The Gambia   Noo-Kunda and Farato School Water Projects - The Gambia

Noo-Kunda and Farato School Water Projects - The Gambia   Noo-Kunda and Farato School Water Projects - The Gambia

Problem Addressed
Each of the two projects consists of executing the following construction plan:

A 4.5-inch borehole will be dug at each school, including two high-quality solar pumps, which will provide sufficient water supply for the schools.

At each, a fully-braced metal-framed tower will be erected at 6-meters height to support the 2,000-liter water tank. This will provide high-pressure water flow for the schools at all times.

A triple-layered 2,000-liter storage tank will be mounted. (Considering the scorching heat of the area in the summertime, we were advised to use a triple-layered water tank for heat durability.)

Two 260-Watt solar panels with a secured frame will be mounted and screwed in with bolt nuts for long-lasting durability.

For the Noo-Kunda school, three standpipes will be installed, along with one tap head in the school kitchen. Being a much smaller school, Farato will only require the installation of one tap head, plus a second one outside the walls of the school, so that community members can benefit from the well, without disturbing the school.

At Noo-Kunda Lower and Upper Basic School, piping will be laid for the horticultural garden to four tap heads, making it easily accessible for the children to water the garden beds. A handwashing station will be erected, and new corrugated roofing and doors will be provided for the latrines, as well as 6 squat toilets inside each latrine. In addition, to maintain the integrity of the garden from roaming animals, perimeter fencing will be supplied, including 35mm iron angle bars with barbed wire.

Water Charity funds will be used to pay for the materials and skilled labor. At both the Noo-Kunda and Farato schools, the community will dig the trenches, provide the sand and gravel, and perform the less-skilled manual labor.

Project Description
Each of the two projects consists of executing the following construction plan:

  • A 4.5-inch borehole will be dug at each school, including two high-quality solar pumps, which will provide sufficient water supply for the schools.
  • At each, a fully-braced metal-framed tower will be erected at 6-meters height to support the 2,000-liter water tank. This will provide high-pressure water flow for the schools at all times.
  • A triple-layered 2,000-liter storage tank will be mounted. (Considering the scorching heat of the area in the summertime, we were advised to use a triple-layered water tank for heat durability.)
  • Two 260-Watt solar panels with a secured frame will be mounted and screwed in with bolt nuts for long-lasting durability.

For the Noo-Kunda school, three standpipes will be installed, along with one tap head in the school kitchen. Being a much smaller school, Farato will only require the installation of one tap head, plus a second one outside the walls of the school, so that community members can benefit from the well, without disturbing the school.

At Noo-Kunda Lower and Upper Basic School, piping will be laid for the horticultural garden to four tap heads, making it easily accessible for the children to water the garden beds. A handwashing station will be erected, and new corrugated roofing and doors will be provided for the latrines, as well as 6 squat toilets inside each latrine. In addition, to maintain the integrity of the garden from roaming animals, perimeter fencing will be supplied, including 35mm iron angle bars with barbed wire.

Water Charity funds will be used to pay for the materials and skilled labor. At both the Noo-Kunda and Farato schools, the community will dig the trenches, provide the sand and gravel, and perform the less-skilled manual labor.

Project Impact
The Farato Nursery School project will benefit around 74 students and teachers, plus with the expected use by neighbors, the total benefited will approach 2,000.

The Noo-Kunda School project will benefit at least 600 people.

In both cases, the number of people who will benefit will steadily increase as the schools continue to attract higher student enrollment due to the positive impacts of these water projects.

Project Administration
Emily Lundberg, Ph.D., Water Charity Country Director – The Gambia, working with Mike McConnell, Managing Trustee of GambiaRising and former Country Director for Peace Corps in The Gambia, and Ebrima Marong, Water Charity Program Manager.

Monitoring and Maintenance
For the Noo-Kunda Lower and Upper Basic School Water project, the implementation of the project will be overseen by Ebrima Marong, Water Charity Program Coordinator, The Gambia). The monitoring and maintenance of the project will be performed by the headmaster Mr. Basiru Njie and his staff, together with the head of the school development committee Mr. Mafugi Dampha. Inevitably, part of the monitoring and lightweight maintenance will be provided by the cooks Mrs. Sunkary Jammeh, Ma Binta Dampha, and Isatou Ceesay.

In the case of Farato Nursery School, the Catholic Education Secretariat and WWG’s Kebba Sanyang will monitor and ensure the maintenance of the new water system.

Let Girls Learn
The Noo-Kunda and Farato school projects will increase the rate of girls’ enrollment in school and, in the case of Noo-Kunda, also teach them how to grow crops. The Noo-Kunda latrines will also help in providing quality sanitation for girls in a secure and friendly atmosphere. In Noo-Kunda, girls walking about a mile or more from neighboring villages to get to the school will find ease.

Project Funding
The funds to implement this project have been advanced for by a longtime supporter of Water Charity so the project could be started at once. If you wish to adopt this project, please contact us.