EWB creates water sources in Kabingo, Uganda

EWB borehole in Uganda

EWB and their community partners drill a new
borehole to provide fresh water to Kabingo, Uganda

Miami’s chapter of Engineers Without Borders (EWB) has drilled boreholes that will give one rural community in Uganda up to 17,000 liters per hour of fresh water.

Becca Kheiry, Brent Reichert, Nathan Soundappan, and Lucy Rukstales, along with two EWB professional mentors—John Baginski and Chuck Dragga—traveled to Kabingo, Uganda over winter term to continue their project there.

For Kheiry and Reichert, this was their second time in Kabingo: the first was last year when they evaluated the needs of the community and identified potential locations for boreholes with the help of a hydrogeologist.

This time, the students, their mentors, and their community partners were ready to start drilling. They created two new boreholes and rehabilitated another one that had become unusable. Between the three working boreholes, 17,000 liters of freshwater can be pumped every hour.

For the community, this is a great achievement—they once had two working boreholes, but both of them had broken down. Since then they had been drinking standing lake water. This water was not always safe to drink, and led to health problems in the community.

Kheiry, Reichert, Soundappan, and Rukstales also created a treatment system for their water. They built a one train system comprised of four steps—storage, aeration, sedimentation, and filtration.

When they return to Kabingo next January, they plan to create another train for their treatment system so the locals can switch between the trains as needed for cleaning. They will also implement solar-powered pumps at the boreholes and add another storage tank next to the local high school.

By Paige Smith