Hedley’s well drilled by Myra’s Wells is now providing clean water to six villages in Burkina Faso
Thanks to cooperation between people of the Fulani and Mossi tribes, Hedley’s well, drilled by Myra’s Wells, is now providing clean water to six villages in Burkina Faso. The village elders agreed a spot which is about equidistant from all six villages. It is still one mile to walk for water. But that is far better than the three miles it used to be! Following Eddie and Karen’s visit to Burkina Faso in January, this is an extract from Karen’s diary. (The whole diary diary will soon be available – if you would like a copy, please email firstname.lastname@example.org for details.)
Arrival at the village of Laado Puel
Our welcome shamed me. How dare I think I was uncomfortable when I see the way of life of these villagers in Laado Puel who are so thrilled with their well. A welcome committee was in a shelter with half a dozen plastic chairs. We shook hands and sat with the village elders. Speeches saying thank you for the well ensued. We did not have an interpreter and Abdul, our trusty driver, stepped into the breach. Eddie’s French was no use in an unschooled village. Abdul’s English is improving by the day and he gave us a summary of what was said. I just smiled and nodded a lot to try to show I was pleased to be there.
The walk to the well
The walk to the well surprised me as it was a mile. The ground was relatively even and the fresh air after the car was just what we needed to recover. Abdul explained that this region was exceptionally dry and there was no well for miles so 6 villages got together to ask for a well, guided by Keith Smith a local missionary with over twenty years’ experience in Burkina Faso. A central point was agreed upon by all the villages so everyone has a walk, but one mile is better than three which was the previous situation for all the villagers. Representatives from all the villages were there, both Fulani and Mossi tribes, all working together, walking together and living in harmony. A lesson for the world to listen and take notice of. A mutual need met.
Thank you to the wells sponsor
The well was quite slow and the pumping took a lot of effort but when you are drawing up water from over eighty metres it is certain to be hard work. They hoped that if you put in an extra pipe it would make it easier so it was good to be able to arrange for that to be done. The water is clear and pure and that is the important thing. Eddie tried to explain how to fix the plaque to the wall of the well. This well is to be called ‘Hedley’s Well’. A member of St Mary’s Church, Longfleet, Poole paid for this well in memory of her parents, Mr and Mrs Hedley.
The gratitude of the people of the village
The walk back to the village reminded me that would be the distance I would have to carry water if we lived there, quite a sobering thought. Some representatives of the other villages came to thank us for the well and explained how it would change their lives. Their words were all similar but all equally heartfelt. The remote area was home but there were many hardships, at least life would be better in one respect. We were presented with a sheep and some chickens, as they are all so poor we felt guilty accepting them but to refuse would cause offence.
And a reminder that 100% of donations received by Myra’s Wells is spent on providing clean water in Burkina Faso. Nothing is taken out for expenses – these are all covered by the trustees of the charity.