Final Report on Water Projects in Ejere District, 2013.
Since 2004, For-ethiopia have completed 15 water projects. Four springs have been capped, five hand dug wells and six drilled wells providing clean water to over 15,000 people.
Thanks to another large generous donation from a group of donors as well as money raised by Mark and Susie Bowers, 2013 was to be another big year for water projects.
Preparation and Planning for Well Drilling.
The local Ejere Water Desk had surveyed eight sites and invited us to take on some of them. With the help of a local water engineer who we had used to supervise the drilled wells in 2011, their reports were studied and seven sites were considered viable.
Construction work on the wells had to be scheduled during the dry season January to May. The Oromiya Regional Government’s Water Resources Board gave rapid approval to our plans in January 2013 as the sites selected were drawn from a list that they had already surveyed and prioritized.
In December 2012/January 2013 considerable administrative work had to be undertaken by the General Manager in Addis Ababa, to advance the tendering process with the drilling companies. The contract for drilling seven shallow (60m) wells was awarded to the same company we used in 2011.
The Drilling Operation.
All drilling equipment was assembled at Addis Alem administrative centre by the beginning of January 2013 and the drilling commenced on the 10th.
Work on Kimoye stopped after several collapses and a second site was also attempted however the ground conditions were not favourable. A decision was made to abandon and move on to the next location. The remaining wells were drilled without problems with the drilling complete by the end of February.
After representations from the local community of Kimoye, a decision was made to cap the natural spring called Gunjo to provide a clean water source. A young boy had been found drowned in the spring some time before and the local people had not been using the spring since then. Confirmation was sought that if the spring were capped that the people would be willing to use the water and work progressed on capping the spring.
Completion of the projects
Following drilling the concrete slabs were cast and the pumps installed. Indode Keta, Indode 1st and Telbo were completed along with their fences or walls in April.
By the 6th May the spring at Gunjo was complete and the remaining wells at Kara Koftu, Changie and Salo were complete by mid-May.
Water samples were then submitted to the laboratory and the positive results received by the end of May. All of the sites were deemed potable.
Ceremonies for the official handover to each community were held at the end of June. There was a real party atmosphere with ox roast, music, decorations and speeches.
Outcomes of the water projects
The six wells and one spring are providing clean, safe water for around 10,000 people with the positive benefits of improved health and saved time freed from long collection journeys.
Plaques at six of the wells show the donors as ‘Friends in England’ with the well at Kara Koftu being attributed to Hudson Bowers.
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