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Village Christophe, Haiti

The residents of Village Christophe constantly experienced stress and suffering caused by their water crisis. There was once a hand pump near the homes available for use often with long lines for water. The demand for water often put a strain on the pump mechanism. Residents were always afraid that the pump would break down or dry up, leaving them without water. Eventually, this fear became a reality. They also purchased water from vendors at exorbitant rates.

The scarcity of water compelled the residents to ration their daily usage carefully. They often had to make decisions about whether to use water for cooking, domestic chores, hygienic purposes, or for drinking. No one should have to make these types of decisions regarding their most essential human need. Furthermore, the ways that the community members transported and stored their water often introduced contaminants. Sometimes, desperation drove them to use unsafe water sources. For these reasons, water-related illnesses, including typhoid, were common.

Ello Valbrun, a 50-year-old businessman, said, “The situation was difficult. We used to spend about one hour, sometimes almost two hours, to get water. We had to spend a lot money to buy drinking water. Sometimes people drank water from hand-dug well. Many of them got sick. My son drank water from a hand-dug well, and he got typhoid. I spend lot of money and time getting water for my family.”

Community leaders decided to take action when they heard about our team’s work in the region. They formally requested a well construction project for their community, and our representative’s soon visited to assess the area. The staff could see that the need for a safe water source was dire and that the residents were prepared to work together to manage it sustainably.

Our team soon returned and began work on the project. The staff got the existing borehole cleaned 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 rehabilitation! Because of your gift, the residents finally had safe water!

The team also helped the residents form a water committee. The committee will remain in contact with our representatives about the functionality of the well and collect voluntary fees to save up a fund to cover the cost of repairs. They were proud to steward their new well!

Our representatives also led sanitation and hygiene promotional activities for the community. They explained how to use the pump properly to prevent damage as well as how to collect and store water in sanitary ways. Through the use of visual aids, the participants learned about germ spread and disease transmission. They learned how to properly wash their hands with soap and safe water. The staff also led a lesson on dental hygiene and sanitary use of latrines.

Ello explained the difference this water project will make in his community. He said, “With this project the situation will be better. We will save more money. We will have more time for working, for studying.”
Exact Coordinates: Latitude: 19.5453676 | Longitude: -71.734304
Previous Water:Hand pump
Source/Location:Rural Community
Total Users:350
Main Water Collectors:Entire community
Pump Type:Hand pump
Depth of Well:90 m
Coliform Bacteria:Absent
The community’s hand pump is in a state of disrepair.
The team flushes out the borehole.
Children enjoy the new well for the first time!
Representative speaks to the community.
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