Project information

Providing communities with water and sanitation

Water is fundamental to life, but unfortunately 1 in 10 people across the world still live with no access to it. This project will help some of the most rural communities in Malawi build and maintain their own water pump, toilets and improve hygiene behaviour to provide the foundations of life.

March 2016 - April 2017

Charity information

Pump Aid

Pump Aid logo
  • Need


    Unavailability of safe drinking water and sanitation in Malawi is a major contributor to poverty, poor health and inequality. Many ‘safe’ water points are likely to still deliver unclean water because they are unprotected and difficult to maintain. Most poverty is concentrated in rural areas where there are deep issues of unsafe water, hunger, food security, water-borne disease, child mortality and lack of safety for women and girls undertaking water collection from remote sources.


    Water poverty is the principal reason poor communities stay poor. To lift countries out of poverty, we must start with the basics. The aim of this project is to help 250 communities in Malawi build and maintain their own water pump. However, it’s not just about clean water - we provide training in good hygiene which helps improve sanitation practice and avoid future disease spread. Reliable water allows food to be grown, children to get to school more often and small businesses to develop.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To improve health especially for children, the elderly, disabled and sick.


    » Provide 250 water points for immediate and visible health benefits
    » In each community train a local community facilitator to promote good hygiene behaviour to the rest of the village

    The reduction in diarrhoeal disease, particularly for the young and elderly.

    Aim 2

    To help eradicate extreme poverty and hunger


    » Access to clean, reliable water allows communities to grow more food, more variety of produce, for a longer growing season.

    Better attendance at school, healthier families and increase in local employment.

    Aim 3

    To ensure the project remains sustainable and long term


    » Train key members of the village to build and maintain the water pump
    » Set up a Water Point Committee in each village to manage and maintain the pump and toilets
    » Create relationships between the village and the area mechanics in case any pump maintenance requires additional support

    Improvements in hygiene behaviour and reduction in water-related illnesses.

  • Impact


    Access to safe water means women can spend more time earning a living, children can attend school and no longer get ill and families can grow food and live healthier for longer.

    Data will be collected from each village to monitor the impact of the project. Data will include factors such as water quality, change in hygiene behaviour, number of reported water-related illnesses and attendance at school. This data will be collected through water quality tests, interviews and case studies.


    The main risks are practical ones as fuel shortages and disrupted material supplies are always an issue in Malawi. Pump Aid is experienced in managing such problems by planning projects in advance and ensuring we have sufficient funds and resources before starting a project. Rising inflation is also an issue but we generally work in sterling and dollars, and stockpile supplies where necessary.


    We will engage donors in project progress through our monthly e-newsletters, impact reporting, online blog, case studies and social media posts. We can provide specific details on the villages we work in including the exact GPS coordinates, number and details of the village along with photos.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £750,000

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      Amount Heading Description
      £235,000 Pump building and installation Materials and labour costs of a locally recruited and fully trained well digging team
      £187,500 Community Engagement Training and information for local leaders in community facilitation and advocacy
      £157,500 Hygiene and sanitation program Workshops and training in safe hygiene promotion and behaviour
      £95,000 Repair and maintenance trainin Training in pump maintenance and raising funds for spare parts
      £75,000 Monitoring and follow up Reporting post-project on water quality, behavior change and health impacts
  • Background


    Malawi is one of the poorest places on earth, ranking 174 out of 187 countries.
    84% of its population lives in rural communities and 23% of these live without access to clean, safe water and have to rely on an open water source. Our project will operate in three key rural areas where there is dire need and where communities have been last in the queue for previous water aid. These districts are called Kasungu, Mchingji and Lilongwe.


    People living in rural communities, nearly half of which survive on $1 or less per day. Those who will see immediate benefit are the most vulnerable - children, the elderly, the disabled and the sick. We assess that up to 30,000 people will benefit in total from this project. That is based on an average of 120 people from each water point.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Pump Aid has existed for 18 years and has provided water to over 1.35 million people since 1998. Our pump technology suits the conditions and terrain in Malawi with a proven functionality rate of 83% (compared to 55% for bore hole and piston pumps). We have an existing operation in Malawi, we work hand in hand with local communities whom we empower to self-manage their water points for the long term future.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Pump Builders

    Pump Aid has a dedicated team of pump builders who train villagers in pump building and maintenance

    Community Facilitators

    The community facilitators train local leaders in the village to promote good hygiene to the rest of the community.


could pay for a water pump for a village of 120 people