Featured project - Village of Mlenga
The Mpwapwa District of the Dodoma Diocese, Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania long advocated for an improved water supply for the remote village of Mlenga in the Mpwapwa District of Dodoma. Residents there are farmers and cattle herders and value the quality of the land, but accessing water involved travel to sometimes salty creeks and obtaining some "sweet" water from very-low-producing springs.
In 2008, Americans of St. Peter Lutheran Church Blackberry, Martin, Ohio, a congregation in the Northwestern Ohio Synod ELCA, took up the call and financed a geophysical survey conducted by Masochi Resources, Dodoma, which identified potential well drilling sites. It took time to raise funds, but once again St. Peter came through for their friends and raised enough money to drill and equip a water well.
In 2014, in consultation with the Dodoma Diocese and Northwestern Ohio Synod, Ground+Water Tanzania was selected to manage the well construction and testing project. G+WT wrote a well construction specification, sought bids from well contractors, and selected a successful bid. This process was not straightforward, as it took some time to obtain enough responsive bids, and a secondary push to finally select a driller after the initial successful bidder could not meet the schedule.
In late October, 2014, the well drillers, G+WT and hydrogeologist observer from the ELCA East Africa office, Dr. Joe Troester, made the trek to Mlenga. A 140-meter well was drilled, with water found at 125-128 meters and additional small water strikes. After some ordeal with generators (a bane of existence in Dodoma is finding a good generator when you need one -- exaggerated by a rough 3-hr drive from Dodoma to Mlenga), a pumping test was conducted by G+WT. The testing indicated a probable yield of 2.4 m3/hour, a useful but not fabulous yield. A solar pump water selected for the permanent installation.
A permanent installation consisting of a 2.4 m3/hour solar-powered submersible well pump and controls, 27,000-L steel-reinforced masonry tank and water systems house (combined manager's residence, control room and business office, and mount for solar panels) was completed and dedicated in February 2016, and now in operation.