We recognise that a “one-size-fits-all” approach to providing water and sanitation will not be successful in all the different places where we work.
Every community has unique needs that must be fully understood. We believe that working with local partners is the best way to understand water and sanitation problems and find the most appropriate solutions. A partner might be an individual, a community or voluntary group or a church, but they are always local people who understand the needs of their community and who share our vision and aims.
The local partner is responsible for establishing a community committee which will help plan the new facilities and manage their upkeep after construction. By giving communities ownership over projects funded by Operation WellFound the possibility of long-term sustainability is greatly increased. This approach not only empowers people to take the first steps out of poverty independently, but involving local people in every stage of the project, including construction, enhances their self esteem, self respect and self worth. Working with local people is fundamental to Operation WellFound’s approach.
How we work
- Research is carried out to ensure that the communities we work in aren’t already self-sufficient, or being helped by other organizations.
- Ground surveys are conducted by our local partners to determine the best methods to source the water, and which equipment to use.
- The boreholes and pumps are tested, and both visual and written reports are sent to our UK office before we declare them officially usable.
- We follow up our work and check that the community is sustaining itself. Where needed we may repair wells in the areas we work, but we normally encourage the communities to maintain the wells themselves.