One of the biggest obstacles faced by water projects in the Casamance region of Senegal is water table depth.  Addressing this issue requires a combination of the right techniques and technology.  In the case of the Tankon rural community, USAID and the Millennium Water and Sanitation Program (PEPAM) decided to pioneer the use of the Universal Pump in Senegal.

In this community, 24 villages were enrolled in the Community-Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) program through the WADA (Water and Development Alliance) project, co-financed by USAID and Coca-Cola. As part of the project’s CLTS intervention—as an incentive and reward—WADA provides a new or rehabilitated water supply point to those villages that achieve Open Defecation Free (ODF) status.

USAID and PEPAM worked together to implement a Community-Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) program in Senegal.  In order to incorporate the Tankon rural community into this program, it was necessary for the implementing partners to tackle the water table depth issue with the use of a mini-rig drill and installation of the Universal Pump.  Although this pump has been widely used in projects across Africa, this was the first time it had been used in Senegal. 

Reaching the water table for new water supply points in the Tankon villages required digging more than 40 meters deep.

This USAID/PEPAM program had a significant impact on the livelihood of the Tankon rural community.  The installation of the Universal Pump and use of the mini-rig drill provided beneficiary populations in Sédhiou with sustainable access to quality drinking water. Not only did this initiative expand the pool of equipment in the Senegalese water supply sector, but the knowledge acquired in using the Universal Pump can now also be easily used for other projects. The 11 pumps installed in this rural community provided 1,650 additional beneficiaries with sustainable access to drinking water.