Conclusion of Zeala and Nci'Bugu Pump Project – Mali

This project has been completed under the direction of Peace Corps Volunteer Colleen Naughton. To read about the beginning of the project, CLICK HERE.

The project was to repair pumps in Zeala and Nci’Bugu.

Colleen reports:

Six men and three women received pump repair training from March 22 – April 1st for the villages of Zeala and Nci’bugu. During the training, the pumps in both villages were disassembled and inspected for repairs.

Money set aside for minor repairs was not enough to purchase the parts necessary for both pumps to function. An entire piston and shell needed to be purchased for Nci’bugu’s pump. A project last year had replaced the part with an old piston and cylinder that were too large for the number of pipes in the forage. Zeala’s pump needed a new cylinder since the existing part had been damaged by previous repairmen.

Both villages depend heavily on their pumps for drinking water during the hot season of March-May. Nci’bugu’s wells in particular were mostly dry and their pump was not functioning. Women would soon have to walk over 2 miles to the next village to fetch water and wash clothes.

The villagers and I were faced with a huge dilemma since the village could not afford the over $500 in pump repairs and the mayor was unable to assist either village financially. They also needed assistance soon since wells were already going dry.

Thankfully, funding was received quickly from Water Charity. Both villages paid the pump repairers to install the new piston and cylinder in the Nci’bugu pump on April 15th and the cylinder for Zeala was installed shortly after.

The pump in Nci’bugu is currently functional but the pump in Zeala has persisting problems that are being investigated by the pump repairers. Fortunately, Zeala has two pumps and one is fully operational. Additionally, each family in Nci’bugu raised 5,000 cfa (~$10USD) to put towards acquiring a new pump in the future since the forage is not properly lined and another pump should be installed for better quality drinking water purposes.

Both communities were extremely grateful for this project’s assistance. In Nci’bugu a village elder commented in the local language, Bambara, “Ji ye sanu ye” meaning, literally, water is gold. “Ni ji te, dugu te” and if there is no water, there is no village.

I am particularly grateful to Water Charity for providing this quick method of project assistance that is extremely valuable, especially in emergency situations. I would also like to thank Six Senses and Resorts for their gracious donation and for selecting my project as part of their Clean Water Projects Initiative.

We, in turn, extend our thanks to Colleen for completing this project, and to The Soneva SLOW LIFE Trust for providing the funding.