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WVU EWB Uganda Water Supply Assessment Trip

Raised toward our $3,000 Goal
27 Donors
Project has ended
Project ended on July 21, at 11:59 PM EDT
Project Owners

Phase 2- Progress for Kabughabugha

January 30, 2018


As second semester is in full swing, the EWB International Project team has continued to work for a healthier future for the village of Kabughabugha. The team completed a safe water supply system preliminary design in the Fall 2017 semester under guidance of WVU Civil Engineering faculty and review by an outside Professional Engineer. The expert suggestions are in the process of being implemented into the design, while the team continues to conduct outreach on the project. In February, the team will begin presenting to Rotary Clubs across West Virginia and was invited to the Midwest Global Health Conference in Cincinnati to discuss our work and future goals. Ensuring access to clean water for all requires patience and hard work, but most importantly, collaboration. The progress made thus far would not have been possible without your support. 




The photo below shows how a child typically collects water in the village. We want to change this to provide safe, clean, and accessible water collection alternatives. Additionally, Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) educational programming is being developed to be implemented upon return. However, we cannot achieve this without your help. The team has initiated another campaign as a 'Phase Two' to the original assessment work completed in August. Please consider viewing the new page by clicking the Give Now below! 




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Meet Kabughabugha

September 15, 2017


Before arrival in Kubughabugha, we thought we would be providing a service with a community to help them gain access to clean drinking water.  When we left, we had developed personal relationships that will exist as life long friendships and produced professional partnerships that will sustain the project into the future. The people of Kabughabugha survive with the absolute least, but have some of the most pure and kind souls. They expressed their gratitude often and welcomed us with dancing and music. The community is so invested in the project that they are supportive even if the route of the ultimate water pipeline must be dug through their farms and plan to demonstrate their commitment through in-kind donations, such as digging the route of the pipeline. 


The living conditions were shocking. While we were expecting to see villagers living in hardship conditions, nothing can prepare you to witness extreme poverty. Most villagers lived in mud huts and survived by subsistence farming at under $1 USD per day. The children were clothed in essentially rags, with torn and dirty garments. Many had just a single shirt or clothing item. Sanitation and hygiene best practices do not occur in the village, as they do not have wash houses or toilets. To obtain water for drinking, cooking and washing, women and children must walk up to five kilometers multiple times a day to the water source, which was untreated. This journey is through the Rwenzori mountains, rugged, steep and challenging terrain, and the villagers do this barefoot or in flip flops. The water buckets were left around the ground, thus leaving them covered in mud and other matter. 


The end goal of the project is to ensure the village of Kabughabugha access to safe water and sanitation. Through the engineering of a water system and the education of best sanitation and hygiene practices, we believe the lives of the locals can be transformed. Clean water truly is the foundation for health, sustainable economies and equality. By improving the water quality and accessibility in Kabughabugha, the standard of living can increase significantly. Women and children can begin to have more time to pursue an education. Villagers can begin to pursue economic endeavors and further develop. Essentially, until the water issue is addressed, all others cannot be, as it is the basic necessity of life.


Thank you!  

Thank you!

August 31, 2017

Work Accomplished

When arriving at Kabughabugha, we had an idea of the assessment work we would be doing but knew that until we were at the site, anything could change. The water source for the village is up a mountain, only accessed by steep, rugged, and inclined pathways. Whereas this is a water project, our primary goal was certain - to test the water quality. We did this through four simple field tests: pH, turbidity, conductivity, and fecal coliform count. Data obtained from these four tests would provide us the necessary information to develop water treatment plans upon return. As we learned the spring was along steep inclines with the end location of the water access pipeline being in a valley but passing through the mountainside, it was absolutely essential to develop topographical maps and record GPS locations of key points and the pipeline pathway. At each location where we intend to build catchment, pressure and storage tanks, we created our own topographical map through relative elevation with tools as simple as a level and tape measure. Finally the path of the intended pipeline path was walked while GPS pathway points were collected for accurate pipeline elevations, drops, and distances.  This vital assessment information is already being put to use in the design of the water system for Kabughabugha. As students, we acknowledge that we are students first. However, we realized that this project was too important to try and design the water system on the side of classes. Therefore, we proposed the idea of an independent study through the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department for the purpose of review and implementation of the collected assessment information. This independent study is allowing us to design the system under the guidance of a professor of environmental engineering and with the advice of two other individuals with expertise of designing and modeling pipe networks for water supply and distribution.  We are excited to see this project continue to develop, and we hope you are, too! 


Thank You

August 29, 2017

Thank you to all generous donations to the student chapter of Engineers Without Borders (EWB) at West Virginia University in support of our assessment trip to Uganda. Our team visited the village of Kabughabugha and met an incredibly pure and kind people through a partnership with Rwenzori Rural Health Services. The villagers survive on just $1 a day, and many children have only one torn and dirty article of clothing. Women and children must walk up to 5 kilometers uphill through rugged terrain, often barefoot, to obtain drinking water from a spring. We want to change this. 

Your contribution greatly helped us in starting this process. As a result of our successful assessment trip, we collected enough data and developed community partnerships that will support our design of a water system this semester which we will implement in phases over the next few years.

Without your help, this could not have been possible. We want to thank you for your support which gave those villagers hope for a better future; and the EWB at WVU a clear vision and a path for changing lives in Kabughabugha. We pledge to continue on this path that we have chosen to help our fellow human beings, and we know that we can count on future support from many generous friends of EWB at WVU. Over the upcoming weeks, we will be sharing photos and videos of the assessment work performed and the people impacted within village, so stay tuned for more updates

Choose a giving level


Level 1

Feeds one team member for a day


Level 2

Provides one team member 2 days of meals.


Level 3

Feeds one team member for the entire trip


Level 4

Provides lodging for all team members for one night in Kasese.


Level 5

Feeds all team members for the entire trip


Level 6

Provides lodging for all team members for four nights in Kasese.


Level 7

Provides one team member international transportation to Kabughabugha.

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