Empowering the People to Maintain Water Wells in Uganda
Prior to our purchase of the Village Drill, IFA used our funds to help other non-profit organizations drill shallow wells, which could be gifted to villages for approximately $2,000 per well. While this system helped many villages access clean water temporarily, it also left the people with an inadequate understanding of the value of a well. There was also a lack of ownership; without the work and effort that goes into fundraising for and building their own wells, the villages were unable to recognize their role as the caretakers and stewards of the wells they were receiving. Additionally, many of these villages had inadequate training on the required maintenance for water wells; as a result, whenever the well began to have issues--including minor maintenance like a worn gasket or pump--some villages resorted to burying their wells and applying to a different non-profit for a new well. As we observed this phenomenon occurring, IFA recognized that setting certain criteria for villages to receive assistance for any kind of well would prepare the people to better understand and care for the valuable asset a well can be and thus set them up for success.