Choya, Si Kunda, and Kalikajara Pump Project – The Gambia

This is a tremendous new project that is being implemented under the direction of Returned Peace Corps Volunteer Jeremy Mak. The project is to secure access to clean and protected water for Choya, Si Kunda, and Kalikajara Villages by installing 3 Blue Pumps.

Jeremy previously completed the Dankunku, Fula Kunda, and Brikama Lefaya Pump Project – The Gambia during his service as a Peace Corps Volunteer, and also finished the Niamina Dankunku Area Pump Project – The Gambia and the Sinchu Jaabo and Kaani Kunda Pump Project – The Gambia as a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer.

Project Location
Si Kunda and Kalikajara Villages, Niamina Dankunku District, and Choya Village, Niamina West District; Central River Region South, The Gambia, West Africa

Description of Project Community
Choya, Si Kunda, and Kalikajara are all ethnic Fula Villages. Most of them make their livelihoods through farming coos, peanuts, and rice in the dry season, and by tending cattle. Poverty is manifest in many ways, most prominently not having enough to eat. Compounded with poor water access (and use of open wells in Si Kunda and Kalikajara), sickness is common, as are skin diseases and other infections.

Water shortage is clearly an everyday problem, with people having to queue to draw water (or pump it at Choya’s old Mark II, which was only recently rehabilitated with a previous Water Charity project). Yerro An, Si Kunda’s alkalo, or village head, says, “We know our water is not clean or safe to drink, but what else can we do? We don’t have any other sources of water.”

Description of Project
This project seeks to secure access to clean and protected water for Choya, Si Kunda, and Kalikajara Villages by installing 3 Blue Pumps. Blue Pumps, made by Fairwater, are much more robust and long last than the typical outdated Mark II pumps seen in many villages, and the water output is much higher, averaging 12-20 liters a minute. It is much easier to use, especially for children, since there is less handle pressure resistance, and maintenance is minimal because of very few moving parts (as compared to the Mark II)

Choya, Si Kunda, and Kalikajara each have or had Mark II pumps, but for a variety of reasons, are not having their water needs met. Si Kunda and Kalikajara are each now depending exclusively on open wells to meet their water needs, presenting serious health and sanitation concerns.

Choya in Niamina West has 380 residents / 23 compounds. One of their Mark II hand pumps work (only because it was rehabilitated through the last Water Charity project), the other does not–A pipe broke and the cylinder fell into the water. Villagers have tried two times to pull it out, but no luck. Sometimes water stresses are so heavy, that village women have to trek to fetch water in nearby Sara Bakary, Medina Wollom, or Sara Sambel.

Si Kunda in Niamina Dankunku has 300 residents / 17 compounds. They had two Mark II pumps installed 7 years ago. However, the pumps experienced problems 4 years ago. A local well mechanic pulled everything out, promising to bring new pipes and parts, but hasn’t. The community, relying only on an open well for their needs and their cattle’s water needs, opened the well last year to ease the dependence on that solitary well.

Kalikajara in Niamina Dankunku has 115 residents / 11 compounds. Their Mark II pumps are 16 years old. They were pulled out 2 years ago. The pipes were stolen from the alkalo’s compound, and so, the community opened the well and relies on the pulley and bucket system.

The Fairwater Foundation has agreed to donate 3 Blue Pumps, 1 each to Choya, Si Kunda, and Kalikajara, with possibly 1 more each for the latter 2 villages. These pumps cost more than $3,000 each installed. The only thing that Swe-Gam, the implementing partner, is asking for is roughly $500 for installation fees and fuel costs from Banjul.

Each community has already agreed to supply the cement, sand, and gravel needed to make the pedestal base for each Blue Pump.

To make a contribution for this project, please click the Donate button below.

$0.00 – This project has now been fully funded through the generosity of the SLOW LIFE Foundation as a part of their Clean Water Projects initiative.

We encourage others to continue to donate using the Donate button below, and we will notify Jeremy of your donation. Additional funds will be used to fund the next project by Jeremy and/or those of other PCVs in the country of service.

This project has been finished. To read about the conclusion of the project, CLICK HERE.