This month, Maranatha Volunteers International kicked off a well maintenance program in Zambia to ensure that communities, where Maranatha has provided a well, will continue to have access to clean and safe water.
“With a proactive well maintenance program in place, families can continue receiving clean water from our wells,” says David Woods, Maranatha’s country director in Zambia. “If the well fails, they end up returning to the distant, dirty, and sometimes dangerous sources they used before Maranatha came to their village.”
For the past month, a newly formed maintenance team has been traveling throughout the country to visit Maranatha wellsites, starting with the oldest ones drilled in 2019. The crew checks on the well and makes repairs or replaces parts as needed. Well recipients are also provided a maintenance number, which they can use to report a problem and receive assistance from Maranatha.
The crew travels with a truck and crane system, and it is loaded with camping gear for the team to sleep and all the necessary tools and spare parts for more than 60 well repairs. While the maintenance is focused primarily on Maranatha-sponsored wells, the crew also repairs any broken well they may come across in their work, free of cost. Studies have shown that anywhere from 40-60% of water wells drilled in Africa are inoperable at any one time due to the lack of proper or regular maintenance.
In 2021, the organization launched a well maintenance program in India and Kenya; Zambia is the latest addition to the list. Maintenance costs are funded by donors and the Wellspring program, which asks people to make a monthly commitment, in any amount, to the construction and maintenance of water wells.
Maranatha has drilled nearly 500 water wells in Zambia and more than 1,500 worldwide.