Wat Tmai Primary School Well Project – Cambodia

Ta Powm Village, Song Key Commune, Rom Doul District, Svay Rieng Province, Cambodia

Community Description
Ta Powm is a small village located approximately 12 km northeast of Kampong Chak Market, which is the district’s only market. It is a primarily agricultural village, consisting almost exclusively of rice fields. The village is approximately 7 km from the nearest health center and 25 km from the nearest hospital. The village does not have access to electricity.

The community is primarily comprised of rice farmers who harvest their crops at the end of the rainy season and use the rice to feed their families throughout the year. Still, many people do not own land, and choose to ride their bikes across the border into Vietnam to work the fields during the Vietnamese harvest seasons.

Many young women from the village also make the long commute in tuk-tuks, vans, truck beds and other forms of transportation, which are dangerously overcrowded with women, in order to get to the many factories in Bavet town, a large border town of approximately 65 km away.

Wat Tmai Primary School is the village’s primary school, which currently educates 329 students from the ages of 6 to 13. The school contains 20 classrooms, but many are out of use due to the deterioration of the buildings.

The average student studies 8 to 9 hours per day, 6 days per week. Students typically study 6 hours in public school classes throughout the day and an additional 2 or 3 hours of private classes. Due to lack of pay, many teachers must provide private classes during the lunch and afternoon hours to supplement their income.

The school’s only existing well is currently broken, but more importantly, it is not deep enough to reach quality water in the dry season. Without a functioning well, the students do not have water to drink, flush the toilets, or clean their hands during the school day.

The lack of water to drink is a threat to the students’ overall health and the inability to flush toilets or wash hands adds another immediate health risk of various diseases caused by the consumption of fecal matter, which is easily transferred to food or mouths by flies and unwashed hands. These risks are compounded by the fact that the students spend a large portion of their day studying at the school or playing games on the school grounds.

Project Description
This project is to drill a new well to give the students and faculty of Wat Tmei Primary School quality water to use for drinking, flushing toilettes and hand washing.

A private driller was called to the site and, in conjunction with the school director, identified the appropriate placement and depth of the well. The driller is prepared to start the construction of the well.

The well will be built in the center of the square at Wat Tmai Primary School. The well will be equidistant from the 3 small bathroom buildings, each containing 2 toilets. The well will be no less than 45 meters deep to ensure access to quality water during the height of the dry season.

The well will have a concrete base, a run-off basin, and a 1-meter deep cement protective liner. A gas-powered pump has been chosen, as there is no access to electricity at the school. A security fence will be built to protect the well from vandalism and thieves.

The faculty, community members, and students have agreed to participate in the construction of the new well. They will carry concrete and sand to the site and excess dirt and mud from the site. All faculty and some students will be present throughout the construction of the well, should further assistance be required.

The drilling will be done entirely by the private driller, as it requires skilled labor and the use of potentially dangerous equipment. In addition to physical labor, the faculty has raised $25 to be used toward the project. The school director will be responsible for arranging the funds for the maintenance, repairs, and fuel that may be required in the future.

Project funds will be used to pay for the services provided by the driller and the gas used to power his equipment. In addition, they will be used to purchase the PVC pipe, the gas-powered pump, and concrete and additional materials to be used in the security fence, well base, liner, and run-off basin.

Upon completion, a sample of the well water will be sent to Phnom Penh to be tested in the RDI laboratory to check for contaminants. The use of the well will commence following the results of the test.

Project Impact
349 current students and 10 current faculty members benefit from the project.

Peace Corps Volunteer Directing Project
Christopher Donnelly

A new well will provide an abundant supply of safe water to the students for drinking, sanitation, and hygiene.

Christopher previously completed the Doul Sala Primary School Well Project – Cambodia.

Dollar Amount of Project

Donations Collected to Date

Dollar Amount Needed
$0.00 – This project has now been fully funded through the generosity of Canterbury Girls’ Secondary College, Canterbury, Victoria, Australia.

We encourage others to continue to donate using the Donate button below, and we will notify Peace Corps Volunteer Christopher Donnelly of your donation. Additional funds will be used to fund the next project by Christopher 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.