Jacana starts a third SMART Training Centre

Jacana will open a new SMART(*) training centre in August 2021. For those who do not yet know what that means, just a quick refresher. Jacana already has two SMART training centres in the Eastern province of Zambia. Our first centre opened in Chipata in 2017 and the second centre opened in Lundazi in 2019. In SMART centres we train entrepreneurs who use local resources to make pumps and manual drilling tools for boreholes, in addition, entrepreneurs are also trained in manual drilling and installation of (solar) pumps. We also train people who do Vertical Electrical Sounding sitings. They can measure where the best place for a borehole is and what the best drilling technique is. Since the founding of the two centres, “our” trained entrepreneurs have provided water to more than 60,000 people.

Animation Water Points in Time

Jacana does not focus on village pumps, which may only be used for the household. In our view, a partially sponsored pump for a family also generates income. About 90% of people living in Eastern province are small-scale farmers who often depend on the rainy season for income. It only rains in Zambia for 4-5 months and the vast majority of all income is made in this period. Can you imagine what happens in a poor rainy season? Then the farmers have a big problem, there is no or very limited harvest of maize, peanuts, soybeans, cotton, tobacco or sunflowers.

Jacana motivates small-scale farmers to also generate income outside the rainy season. This is possible if they have access to water all year round. Then a family can start a vegetable garden or keep small livestock, which can provide much-needed extra food and income.

Jacana has had good experiences in Chipata and Lundazi, where we see that small-scale farmers make good use of the extra water, but we also see a nice side effect, which is that they share water with their neighbours for free. A pump, whether or not partially sponsored, provides an average of 10.5 households with water for domestic use. As a result, many women no longer have to walk miles to get water (of often questionable quality). In this way, a private pump also serves a part of the village. An additional advantage is that there is no discussion about who should repair a private owned pump. The fact that you earn money with it provides additional motivation to maintain the system. Did you know that in Africa 40% of all village pumps no longer work? This is mainly due to lack of ownership.

This experience made us decide to start a third centre in the province. This way most people in the Eastern province of Zambia (the size of the Netherlands) will have access to affordable boreholes and pumps. When Jacana moves out of an area, entrepreneurs continue to earn a living selling SMARTechs. Good for the entrepreneur, good for the customer (often farmers) and good for the food supply on the local market.


Picture by Andre Janssen

Setting up a centre is a three-year process. Year one is mainly focused on training the entrepreneurs who make SMARTechs and practice these skills. The first farmers who are eligible for a partially sponsored pump will also be selected in year one. The second year will be devoted to further guidance of the SMART entrepreneurs. They mainly learn by doing and Jacana can guarantee this by having them drill partially sponsored boreholes. Moreover, in this way we create a market, because people first have to see that a new technology actually works before it is bought. The second year aims also at finding more motivated farmers who will receive a partially sponsored pump. In year three we will continue with the implementation of pumps and the SMART entrepreneurs will focus more and more on private customers who do not need sponsorship.

Lundazi pump producers

This entire process costs money and fortunately there are organizations such as Skat Foundation and Wilde Ganzen who are willing to join us in this three-year process.

The two new managers for Petauke, Menno Jan Rietema and Janke Maat (more about them later), have also started a campaign for this project. We are still looking for an amount of 13,000 euros for this first year and then we can get started. So, if you want to support this project and create a better life for a small-scale farming family in Zambia, you can donate.

Wilde Ganzen

Wilde Ganzen donates 1 euro on top of each 2 euros that you contribute.


  • € 6,875 raised now, still € 6,125 of € 13,000 needed. 53%

Please donate here

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(*) SMART= Simple Market base Affordable Repairable Technologies



Remember that Dutch donors can get a tax-refund ANBI. Every small donation is welcome.

Dutch special: Shoppen voor Afrika


300 Online shops ondersteunen kleine Afrikaanse ondernemers.

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