In the Lupane district, in Matabeleland, Zimbabwe, lies the remote village called ‘Sibangani’. About 180 families live in Sibangani (about 1,800 people). The village is faced with a water crisis and urgently needs help.
The only source of water currently is the pool with surface water (as opposed to groundwater), which is about 3 meters deep, but this water is a health hazard (see pictures). The water of this pool is not covered, but the villagers keep using it because there is no other water source close by. This water is also used for cattle and other animals.
There are two access roads and they need attention because trucks can not reach the village. For a 20-ton truck (with drilling equipment) the most logical access road to the village is via the Kenmaur exit, past the St. Luke’s hospital, 18 km to the North and then 10 km to the West. This last 10 km must be adjusted for the 20-ton truck.
The school, Sibangani Primary School, has 351 pupils aged 4 to 13 years. There is one well with hand pump, close to the school, with barely enough water for the pupils. There is no water for the orchard and the vegetable garden of the school. The pupils also can not receive education in these water applications. The villagers, 2 km away from the school, can sometimes get water here with permission from the school. The law prohibits cattle and other animals from using water from a school well.
In November 2018, water surveys were carried out by hydrogeologist, Richard Gumbi. Two sites have been identified where, in all likelihood, there is water in the ground, albeit at a depth of 70-90 meters. One site is on the grounds of the school and the other on the vast grounds of the village (with about 180 homesteads).
The villagers are happy to provide a good access road (for the 20-ton truck) to the sites where drilling will take place. In a village meeting between the men and women, it was decided to work on the road every Wednesday (with a few hundred men and women).
The drilling for water will take place in May 2019 by a drilling company from Bulawayo. Mpilo Foundation will be present when drilling for water.
If water is found at the sites of the surveys (75-80% probability), a Zimbabwe Bush Pump is installed and every homestead (household) has to deposit an amount for a joint savings scheme, managed by the water committee in collaboration with the Councilor (District Councilor), intended for maintenance. The Councilor is called in for problems. Mpilo Foundation visits the project annually for a period of 3-5 years.