Thursday, April 27, 2017

Filling New Springs

By Joni Byker, internal projects and communications staff in Liberia

Last October, the Kpamai community grabbed every shovel, wheelbarrow, bucket, or bowl they could find to complete the backfilling of their newly constructed spring. Men, women, and children helped to move piles of dirt from the base of a hill to cover up what was once their community’s water collection area: a muddy, spring-fed pool that was open to surface contamination by run-off, animals, and human feces.

The community knew their water had not been safe, and had heard that Samaritan’s Purse had done a spring protection project in a community that formerly drank from a muddy spring pool similar to their own. So they requested our help, and while they were preparing for the project to begin, cleared a road from the community to the spring site so that a vehicle could haul project materials more easily.

By working together with Samaritan’s Purse, the community was able to protect the spring so their water is now safely collected in a concrete box and accessed through a pipe. The Kpamai community (population 100) now has year-round access to clean water.

In addition to this blessing, uplifting and God-honoring relationships were developed between community members and three Samaritan’s Purse technicians as they worked on Kpamai’s spring project for three weeks. The community members praised our staff for the encouragement they brought to the community.

“Thank you for your staff,” one man said. “They are good people and we like to be around them. Sometimes other organizations come here and we feel they think they are better than us, but it was not like that with Samaritan’s Purse. You have encouraged us a lot.”

Our staff also had the opportunity to pray and share some Bible stories with the people of Kpamai as the project was underway. Hopefully this relationship of trust and respect will open more doors for ministry in Kpamai as Samaritan’s Purse continues its community development work.