Water in a War Zone

PPF's Well Repair Project in the Nuba Mountains In June, 2011, the jihadist government in Sudan launched a war of genocide in the Nuba mountains of Sudan, which is home to that country's largest Christian community. The government closed the airspace and issued an order for all foreign humanitarian organizations to leave.

That's when PPF went in.

On July 4th, 2011, we landed in the Nuba. We stayed two weeks and traveled all over the region. We interviewed dozens of leaders, pastors, military commanders, and regular citizens. We made an assessment of the needs and then began planning our first outreaches.

One of the needs that was brought to us by the community was the problem of maintaining the hand-pump borehole wells where most people get their supply of safe water. With most NGOs pulling out and supplies getting very scarce, obtaining both parts for repairing boreholes and fuel for vehicles transporting technicians was increasingly difficult.

Children fetch water from a repaired village borehole

People tend to move to where safe water is plentiful, so when one well pump would break, everyone would use another working pump, which increased the stress on that pump, causing it to break. This domino effect led to hundreds of well pumps breaking down within a few months of the war starting.

In late 2012, PPF teams met with local government officials and planned an operation to repair boreholes in several hard-hit communities. We were not sure how many we could repair in an active war zone, so we set an initial goal of repairing at least 15-30. In early 2013, we assembled the team, spare parts, fuel, etc., and began to work.

Water from hand-dug well is often dirty and filled with bacteria

Dirty water

By the end of the dry season, we had completed repairs on 95 pumps!

We decided to increase our vision and to shoot for 105 additional well repairs by the end of the dry season in 2014. By June, 2014, this new goal had been reached, bringing the total number of repaired boreholes to 200.

Clean water pouring forth from a repaired borehole

In 2015, our teams are continuing the repairs, focusing on areas very close to the front lines of the conflict. It hasn't been easy. Last year, one of our trucks was hit by shrapnel from a bombing. The government of Sudan wants to create a humanitarian crisis to drive the Nuba people from their homeland. That is why the planes primarily target villages, schools, hospitals, and markets.

As the war drags on, the number of outside organizations helping the Nuba people has gradually eroded. There are now only four of us left. And PPF is the main organization repairing boreholes. It's a major responsibility, considering PPF is nowhere near the size of the "heavy-hitter" NGOs working int he two Sudans.

So why us?

Simple: you.

PPF is a public charity. Our funds come from you, the public. We receive no government money, which means we have the flexibility to go "where needed most."

Repaired wells bless entire communities

The dedicated giving of PPF ministry partners has provided this life-saving outreach to the Nuba people, who would otherwise be suffering even more than their current condition. Dirty water is responsible for more than 80 percent of all diseases in the Nuba. There is only one referral hospital operating in the Nuba mountains - and it's already been bombed once. Imagine how stressed the hospital would be with a flood of new patients suffering from water-borne illnesses? Two hundred working boreholes translates into better health, and a conservation of medicines for those still living in communities with broken wells.

But 300 working boreholes would be better. And 400 would be even better than that.

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We are committed to planning the missions and our teams are willing to take the risk and to continue working in the war zone. But we need your continued support to keep us going. We are nothing more than an extension of your compassion. The more active compassion you give, the more we give.

Please consider giving again today. And thank you for what you've already done!