UMR Dig Well Project

UMR Dig Well project constructed 225 water wells, hand pumps, and deep tubes in Cambodia, Bangladesh and Pakistan. Started in 2015, the objective of this three-year project is to enable and accelerate universal access to improved drinking water sources and hygienic sanitation in the rural areas of our priority countries, identified by the largest inequality between rural and urban Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) coverage.

UMR Dig Well project was designed and implemented in partnership with Muslim Aid, and in consultation with local community members, chiefdom and leaders as appropriate, as well as local government officials.

Water Wells Built

Thousands of Families are waiting for your donation

UMR is building water wells in the following countries:
Bangladesh, Kenya, Pakistan, Senegal, Somalia

This project completion report details the overall project guiding principles, results, and specific country‐level context which was addressed.

  1. Our grassroots effort contributing to UN 2030 SDG targets no. 1.4, 6.1 and 6.2.

UMR’s WASH program efforts are guided by the recommendations of the WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Program for Water Supply, Sanitation and Hygiene (UNICEF/WHO JMP) to eliminate inequalities in WASH coverage and “leave no one behind”. For example, the JMP highlights that [although] the proportion of the global population practising open defecation decreased from 20 per cent to 12 per cent between 2000 and 2015, much remains to be done, especially in rural areas, where open defecation has been declining at a rate of just 0.7 percentage points per year. The JMP recommended that this rate would need to more than double in order to eliminate open defecation in rural areas by 2030.1

Table 1. Relevant UN 2030 SDG Targets

Global goals, targets and indicators for drinking water, sanitation and hygiene

Ending open defecation By 2030, achieve access to adequate and equitable sanitation and hygiene for all and end open defecation, paying special attention to the needs of women and girls and those in vulnerable situations Population practicing open defecation
Achieving universal access to basic services By 2030, ensure all men and women, in particular the poor and vulnerable, have equal rights to economic resources, as well as access to basic services… Population living in households with access to basic services (including basic drinking water, sanitation and hygiene)
Progress towards safely managed services By 2030, achieve universal and equitable access to safe and affordable drinking water for all
By 2030, achieve access to adequate and equitable sanitation and hygiene for all and end open defecation, paying special attention to the needs of women and girls and those in vulnerable situations
Population using safely managed drinking water services
Population using safely managed sanitation services
Population with a basic hand washing facility with soap and water available on premises
  1. Community engagement and staff capacity building as key for sustainable implementation

To implement, UMR project carried out consultations with local government and local leaders to identify the priority beneficiaries and priority concerns of the community to be addressed.

In addition, staff responsible for implementation of the project received orientation and training on aspects of (water-well installation) strategy, procurement rules and procedures, reporting and record keeping in order to streamline future monitoring and evaluation, and avoid doubling of development efforts.

Finally, the project staff conducted sensitization training for beneficiaries on water safety, benefits of safe water, personal/environmental hygiene and maintenance of wells, etc. to ensure effectiveness and long-lasting results.

  1. Closing the Gender Gap: A Commitment to Universal2 Access

In addition to UMR’s efforts to close the rural-urban gap, UMR’s Dig Well project paid special attention to alleviate the double burden of access to clean water upon women and girls. Previous JMP analysis has shown that water collection from unimproved sources and surface water is more likely to take over 30 minutes, representing a double burden for women.3 This is most felt as women and girls are responsible for water collection in 8 out of 10 households with water off premises, so reducing the population with limited drinking water services will have a strong gender impact.4


Country Program # of Wells # of Beneficiaries
Cambodia Water Well 3 763
Hand Pump Well 6 396
Shallow Tube Ring Well 11 209
Pakistan Modified Shallow Well 5 25,340
Open Surface Well 5 22,085
Shallow Well 83 345,208
Bangladesh Deep Tube Well 1 500
Semi Deep Tube Well 3 520
Shallow Tube Well 108 3,284
Total 225 398,305



Garissa WASH

UMR constructed a new water well for the residents of Garissa, Kenya, largely populated by Somali refugees. On February 20th, men, women, and children gathered to admire the new addition to their town.


Pakistan WASH

Pakistan WASH Absolute inequalities are greatest in countries with the largest spread between the richest and the poorest, such as […] Pakistan for hygiene.1 Despite the access of 91% to improved water


Cambodia WASH

Cambodia WASH Cambodia has the lowest rural sanitation coverage in the region. Sustainable water access remains a challenge, with high rates of inoperable water facilities. Rural access to both water and sanitation


Bangladesh WASH

Bangladesh WASH Bangladesh is one of the most densely populated countries in the world, with more than 1000 people per square kilometer.1 Three quarters of the population live in rural areas, where

1JMP Report: Progress on drinking water, sanitation and hygiene: 2017 update and SDG baselines. Geneva: World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), 2017. Licence: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO.
2Universal access not only implies extending access to the entire population, but also sustaining access in the face of social and economic change. (For more details, see JMP, p.11).
3JMP Report
4JMP Report