Five Years Later

It must have felt like only minutes since she laid her weary head to rest after another long, exhausting day. It was still dark, and Vickness, grandmother of six, arose to tackle her morning chores. If she was able to get everything done in time, the children would make it to school today. Or would they?

Outbreaks of cholera, dysentery, hepatitis A and typhoid were regular, unwelcome visitors to her community, claiming the lives of the weakest. For Vickness and other villagers in Zolomondo, Malawi, each day was a matter of survival, making it difficult to plan for the future. It was an arduous effort just to feed their families each day.

This was the grim reality five years ago. Today, Vickness tells a different story. “Now, … development has resurfaced in villages. Children can go to school. Kids eat every morning.”

Mud structures with thatched roofs have been replaced by homes and schools built of brick. Flourishing gardens dot the landscape. Villagers have started their own businesses.

What made such a remarkable difference in so short a time? Clean water.

In November 2013, SonSet Solutions, World Vision and Design Outreach came together to install Design Outreach’s very first innovative LifePump™ in Zolomondo using a portable tripod designed by SonSet Solutions mechanical engineer Cody Hall. The pump has not experienced a single day of downtime.

Before the LifePump, Vickness would have to sleep by the old water source to wait her turn to draw water which was normally covered with algae. Today, she has easy access to clean water whenever she needs it.

Since 2013, SonSet Solutions has taken eleven trips with Design Outreach, helping with installation tools, SonSetLink™ water monitoring, and training. The LifePump is transforming communities, but Greg Bixler, CEO and co-founder of Design Outreach, reports an unexpected benefit – people have time to go to church because hours are no longer wasted retrieving water.

Seeing the incredible transformation that clean water brought to Zolomondo causes us, along with our Malawian brothers and sisters, to give glory to God for his provision of this life-giving resource.

 (Picture courtesy of Design Outreach)

Written by Erica Simone