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Chimana Primary School, Zambia

Chimana Primary School is located in central Zambia, an area known for its semi-arid climate. The community’s weather made it difficult for residents to find safe and reliable water sources, especially during the dry season. Luckily, Chimana Primary School constructed a safe water well several years ago. For years, the students and community relied on this water point for all of their daily needs. However, after so many years of use, the hand pump started to rust, slowly cutting the students off from the only water source on campus.

Soon, the students and community at-large were waterless. The children were forced to wander the broader region to search for water sources, often coming up empty-handed. When they did find water, it was collected from shallow, hand-dug wells, which weren’t sealed off from contamination. The students knew the water wasn’t safe for them to drink, but they had no alternative. To make matters worse, the water they drank not only sapped their health, but also depleted the students’ time, energy, dignity, and ability to plan for the future.

Shibalabala Willard is a 45-year-old teacher at Chimana Primary School. Every day since their well broke down, he has seen increasingly sick students. He said, “The pupils fetched water from far away shallow wells. Cases of diarrhea were common among our students.”

The school administration knew that they needed a safe and reliable water source to keep their children healthy and in school. They heard about our work in the region and reached out requesting urgent help.

The staff visited the school and found a dire situation. The staff soon returned to the community to get the existing borehole up and running. They flushed out the borehole to remove any loose, sedimentary rock, cased it with PVC, formed a sanitary gravel pack, and treated the water. Once they tested the water to ensure it was safe to consume, they were able to mount the hand pump and handle, completing the well! Because of your gift, the students and community finally had safe water in a central location at the school.

Our team also helped the school establish sustainability practices to help ensure a future of safe water access. They guided the community in creating a water committee to oversee the care and maintenance of the well.

In order to help the school staff and community members understand how to use the safe water you gave them as a means of improving their health, our staff held hygiene and sanitation promotion activities. These interactive lessons taught the students and staff effective handwashing, how to prevent the spread of disease, and how to properly store water. Now that they are equipped with tools and knowledge, the school’s community can take charge of their health.

Shibalabala was thrilled that his students could now focus on their school work, uninhibited by waterborne illnesses. He said, “I am hopeful that we will have less cases of diarrhea because of our safe water.”
Exact Coordinates: Latitude: -15.008837 | Longitude: 27.817405
Previous Water:Borehole
Source/Location:Rural School
Total Users:382
Main Water Collectors:Women and Children
Pump Type:Hand pump
Depth of Well:62 m
Coliform Bacteria:Absent
The community’s hand pump broke, leaving the school without water.
The staff installs new piping to seal the well from contaminants.
A teacher gathers safe water from the well for the first time!
Staff members instructs the teachers on sustainability practices.

Our partnership with Landesign Construction & Maintenance helped contribute the financial support needed to build the well and educate the community on water hygiene best practices. Thank you for your support!

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