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Mozambique Trip 2017

Report: Mozambique Trip April 2017

After purchasing the drilling rig, and importing it from China, it arrived in Durban, South Africa in November 2016. We hooked it behind the Land Rover and towed it approximately 50 km when both the wheel bearings gave in. It had to be loaded onto a flat bed tow truck and taken in for repairs.


After lengthy discussions and researching various options it was decided to do several modifications to the rig. Both trailer wheel hubs were changed to ones with drums with braking systems, and larger wheels were fitted. Heavy duty suspension springs were added as well as a new axle. A tow-hitch with a self-braking system was included.


The drilling rig was tested locally and worked well. We were ready to take it up on its first drilling trip into northern Mozambique.


On 2 April 2017, I, David Botha, and Caleb Makhela loaded up two vehicles, one carrying supplies and Mozambique Trip 2017tools and the other towing the drilling rig. The plan was to enter Mozambique at Komatipoort and then head north up into the Morrumbala district in the Zambezi province of Mozambique, north of the Zambezi River.


The trip started well, without any serious issues.  On the evening of 2 April, we slept over in Komatipoort, entering Mozambique the following day.


One of my concerns was getting the rig across the border on a Temporary Import Permit. Even though the officials tried to bribe us to allow the rig to enter, we refused, and eventually, they let us in on a temporary import permit.


HDPE PipesWe stopped and purchased HDPE pipes as well casings to just outside of Maputo. The Land Rover, which we were using as the load vehicle, had been previously fitted with a carrier to enable it to carry these pipes. Towing the 3-ton rig meant that the going was slow, and that night we made it to Xai Xai, where we slept over.


We left at sunrise the following morning, hoping to make the 800 km journey up to in Nchope, where we planned to spend the night. I have travelled these roads on many occasions over the last eight years. On my first trip in 2009, the roads were in a very bad state, but had been worked on and resurfaced, and the last time I had driven them, had been in much better condition (over the last few years I had entered Moz through Zimbabwe, but had avoided doing so this time because of the import issues with the rig)


However, the heavy timber trucks that drive up and down on this only tarred road in Mozambique, had obviously have taken their toll. The road had again deteriorated and in some places became almost un-drivable. After slowly driving through very badly potholed areas, about 12 hours later we had only travelled 600 km.  We pulled over to sleep for the night.


Cracked Metal FrameOn inspection of the trailer, it was discovered that the front tow-hitch wishbone was in a bad state, and the metal walls were separating. It was decided the following morning that the rig would be unhitched, the front wishbone removed and taken to the nearest village about 60 km away where we would look for somewhere to have it welded and repaired. I was up at 5:30 the next morning and started to unhitch the rig, assisted by Caleb Makhela. In order to unhitch the ring from the tow hitch, it required raising the rig with a hydraulic bottle jack.


The soil in Mozambique is very sandy, and even though we had put a block beneath the jack, it slipped as it unhooked from the vehicle, the rig twisting sideways, falling down and pinning my leg beneath it.  The rig weighs approximately three tons, and the pain was intense. Caleb tried to lift it but was obviously unable to.  He called for help and David came running. Both of them were unable to lift the rig. After scraping and digging they were able to get the jack back under it again and slowly jack it up.  My foot was twisted 90 degrees out of position, the sole of my foot facing to the left instead of downwards.  My upper thigh had been crushed and indented. I immediately knew that was the end of the trip, as I was in serious trouble and the only one of the group who knew how to operate the rig.


Broken Leg Makeshift CastFortunately, David had been trained as a paramedic and was able to relocate my foot and splint it. The closest hospital was in Chimoio, about 180 km away. I was loaded onto the back seat of the double cab van, and we immediately headed to Chimoio.  The bad condition of the roads, and the pain I experience as we went over the bumps made for a long, slow journey. Eventually eight hours later we arrived at the Chimoio hospital.

X-rays determined that my ankle was badly broken.

X-ray Broken Leg


As Portuguese is the main language spoken in Moz, and English not at all, effectively communicating with the Dr there was impossible. I took photos of the x-rays and sent them back to South Africa. I was advised to fly back home to be operated on.  The following morning we drove the five hours to Beira, where I caught a plane and flew back to Johannesburg. The following morning I was taken into surgery. Plates and screws were used to put my ankle bone back together, and the ligaments on both sides were reattached. I spent two weeks in a back slab cast while the swelling went down, and then another six weeks in a full cast. I am now almost fully recovered from this injury and walk only with a very slight limp.


 Where to from here:

Mozambique Water Well CharityMy initial plan with the rig was to take it up and down from South Africa to northern Mozambique on each trip. The idea was to be able to use it in South Africa to drill Wells locally and use the money generated from that to help pay for the trips to Mozambique.  With the deteriorated condition of the roads in Moz, this is no longer a viable option.


In order to be able to continue with the plan to provide the people of Mozambique with water, the option that remains to us is to have the rig permanently imported into Mozambique.  We would need to drive it very slowly up to northern Mozambique, which would probably take about five days. We would leave the rig up there, and just travel with the fans, every time we went on the drilling trip. We could cut through Zimbabwe and be able to do the trip in two days.


However, even though we are trying to assist the people of Mozambique, the government is insisting on a 50% import duty, which would come to about $7000, which we just don’t have.


The other option is to keep the rig in South Africa, where there are also needs for clean water. Here the roads are in a way better condition, and the ring would not take such a pounding. However, the need in Mozambique is far greater.


The rig could be used locally to provide boreholes for those who could afford to pay, such as farmers, and the profits generated could be saved until we had enough funds to permanently import the rig into Mozambique.  We can also be drilling in villages in South Africa, providing them with clean water at the same time.


One of the challenges but this plan is someone would need to be trained locally in order to be able to operate the rig on a full-time basis. My work commitments just won’t allow me to do this.

Your prayers in this regard, for wisdom and direction, are much appreciated.

Tim Maguire

August 2017


facebook competion

Facebook Competition- Win a weekend getaway for two

Help us come up with a slogan for Doing Well and you could win a weekend getaway for two at the scenic Linga-Longa guest lodge valued at R2000!

To enter simply like our facebook page and leave a comment with your slogan idea. Once the competition is over we will pick our new slogan from your suggestions and the winner will be notified!

Linga-Longa is situated in Limpopo near Bela Bela, 2 hours outside of Johannesburg. Nestled in the Waterberg mountains. There are many nearby attractions, activities include: Hiking, Birdwatching, visiting the nearby game-farms and exquisite nearby dining.

The competition ends on the 31st of October, the winner will be announced on Monday the 7th of November.

Competition rules:

This competition is being run by Doing Well (Registered NPO: 105-548-NPO) in partnership with Linga-Longa guest farm. Please note the following rules:

  • You may leave as many suggestions as you like
  • Only suggestions given before the 31st of October will be considered
  • No donation is necessary (Although we do appreciate any donations)
  • Entries must be given by comment on the facebook post for the competition, no other forms of entry will be considered

Drinking Water From The Toilet – CHALLENGE!

This may seem disgusting but there are people out there who do worse than this everyday, to survive!

Upload a video of yourself drinking a cup of water from the toilet and upload it to Youtube with the title “Drinking Water From The Toilet Challenge!”

Now challenge 5 of your friends on Facebook to do the same. If not, why not donate $5 to our cause? If just 100 people can donate $5 we will be able to provide clean drinking water to an entire village in Africa.



Report: Mozambique, March 2013

Mozambique, March 2013

Dawie Maree and I left Johannesburg at around midday on Tuesday the 26th March , on the first leg of our trip – destination Nelspruit, where we were to collect the 5 bio-sand filters which we were planning to install in Northern province of Zambezia, near the village of Morrumbala, Mozambique. These filters were very kindly donated by Wishing Well International and H2O South Africa.

The Edmonton, GCI congregation in Canada had very kindly paid for a tow-hitch to be fitted to my car,( a little Renault Sandero, fondly named ‘Monique’) which allowed us to tow a trailer and take up clothing and food which had been donated by local congregations, and 100 Portuguese bibles donated by the Toronto GCI congregation. We had carefully packed our trailer to allow room for the filtration units we were to collect. They are pretty bulky as each of the 5 filtration units weighs approximately 80kgs, as a result of the gravels that are used as filtration media. (I am looking at the possibility of sourcing other units for future trips that are much smaller, less weighty but more effective)


We arrived in Nelspruit at about 4.30pm, and loaded up the trailer with the filtration units. As the trailer was very heavily loaded we purchased spare wheel bearings as a precaution. In hindsight it would have been wiser to have purchased a second spare wheel!

We slept over at my brother Dave’s home that evening, and left early the next morning (5.30am) for the Mozambique border at Komatipoort, about an hour’s drive away. Crossing border posts in Africa can be tricky as corrupt officials sometimes want to line their own pockets, and I feared our enclosed trailer may raise some eyebrows, but the crossing went smoothly and without incidence. We now had a 2000km trip North ahead of us, with roads that getting progressively worse.

We travelled all day and into the night, Dawie and I taking turns at driving. Eventually at about 10pm we were both too tired to continue and stopped for the night besides the Save River. There was nowhere we could pitch our tent, so we just tilted our car seats back and tried to make ourselves as comfortable as we could for the night. We ate a supper of biscuits and a cold KFC we had purchased at lunchtime. Unfortunately I had forgotten to repack our gas cooker when we left Nelspruit so a hot cup of coffee wasn’t an option.

By about 5am Dawie and I agreed neither of us was going to get any more sleep, so after stretching our legs by walking around the car a few times we continued on our trip North. By about 10am, after we passed Chimoio, the roads started getting really bad and dodging potholes (or deciding which is the lesser of many potholes, when dodging wasn’t an option) became a fulltime stress. Towing a trailer made manoeuvring doubly difficult.

travelling on
Travelling on such bad roads should be done at no more than 20-30 km/hr. Unfortunately when you have such long distances to travel, taking chances by travelling faster than one should becomes part of the deal. Late that morning the inevitable happened- I misjudged a pothole
dawie wondering1
which dented one of the trailers wheels, resulting in a flat.
dawie wandering2
Dawie wondering why he came along!? With our (only) spare trailer wheel fitted, we were soon on way to Morrumbala again.


with our
At about lunchtime we crossed the Zambezi River. We were now just 120km from our destination. From now on potholes were no longer a problem… as we only had ungraded gravel roads (tracks) to drive on. The going was slow but we were excited as the trip was almost over. At about 4pm it was Dawie’s turn to misjudge a really bad section of road. We now had another flat trailer tyre and irreparable rim and (we only discovered later) sheared leaf-springs. The only option was to leave Dawie with the trailer and drive to Morrumbala and get the spare wheel repaired. The roads were now really bad and the 30km drive took over an hour. It was getting late and I didn’t want Dawie alone on the road after dark.


the tyre
The tyre repair shop in Morrumbala was quite an experience. A young man with a 4 pound hammer, a tub of grease and a generator operated compressor. the tyre

But he was obviously good at what he does and after panel beating the rim, sealing it with grease and inflating the tyre, I was able to return to Dawie with the wheel. When I got back to him it was already dark and he was surrounded by curious locals.

I have never seen anyone as pleased to see me before!

At just after 9pm we finally arrived at Fraqueza Village, near Morrumbala, where the local GCI headquarters is. The warm welcome with much singing and hand shaking washed away our weariness. We then pitched our tent and passed out for the night.

at just
I would like to thank my friend Leigh Smithson (also from Canada) for his kindness and thoughtfulness. After travelling on a similar trip with me last July, and sleeping on the hard ground in tents, he bought and sent back to SA two self inflating super-comfortable mattresses. They make such a difference, and allowed both Dawie and myself to get a really good night’s sleep for the 4 nights that we spent camped in the village. I look forward to using them again for many more trips.

The next morning we were able to hand out all the supplies and gifts that we had brought with us-

a trailer full
food packs

The appreciation showed by these humble people was overwhelming!

easter weekend
easter weekendLater that morning we were joined by a group of 11 South Africans from the Limpopo province who had chosen to visit with their Moz brothers and sisters over the Easter weekend

the wells

(Dawie was one of the members who dug the wells last year- He forwarded me his thoughts and observations on how the wells were working)

Of course I was looking forward to see how the two wells that were dug last year by us were working. It was really exciting to see how “well” it was going.

I could immediately see how these wells have changed the lives of people who live in that village, how it has added to the successful functioning of the conference and how it has had a positive impact on the people around the village on their physical comfort and their contact with God through his people.

In the same way the wells in the Village where the conference was held (and has now been held for the past 3 years) and the well on the church property nearly a kilometre away have brought a fresh, cool, cleaner way of life to the people of the Village, and the surrounding villages and homes.


The well on the church property is along the “main road”, not really a road in anybody’s wildest imagination, the main thoroughfare to the small town of Morrumbala which is the main centre of all the economic activity in the area. Hundreds of people use this road every day and the well is ideally located for people to stop and have a drink of cool clean refreshing water.

a weary

Travellers, who mainly walk or ride bicycles, travel long distances without the chance of having something to drink. And many times when they do, the water is not clean or they have to pay for it. The well on the Church property is for the people who need water to drink.

The water is clear and clean, the well is about 6 meters deep. The water is about two meters deep. That means the well holds about 2 thousand litres of clean water. The well has been dug deeper and more rings, have been added by the Villagers.

The wells were constructed by using concrete/cement rings (about 750 mm in height and 1200 mm in diameter), the same type of concrete rings used for the construction of pipelines). The concrete ring is placed on the ground and the soil/ground is removed until the ring slides downwards. The next ring is added on top and more soil is removed, the hole gets deeper, adding more rings, and in this way creating a shaft – a well. The great advantage of constructing the well in this way is that it can be dug deeper if it dries-up by adding more rings.

In discussions with the Villagers they say the well dries-up in the months of November/December, the driest months of the year. They have added more rings and dug the well deeper, and this has worked well because there is now also a deeper “reserve” of water. But they say they cannot dig the well any deeper because they have now reached solid rock.


The water in the well in the Village itself is also clear and clean. Here more concrete rings were also added to the well which was also dug deeper. A ring that was “made” on site, with the mould that we brought from South Africa, was used so that the well could be dug deeper.

The Village well is now about 7 meters deep with the water level about 3 meters deep. That is over 3 thousand litres of water. It was good to see that the water level in this well did not drop during the conference even though it was used to cater for more than 700 people. People were drawing water all day – and even through the night – to drink, cook and wash with. Normally the Villagers would have had to walk about a kilometre and a half to fetch water and then the old water is quality was very poor.

early morning


The water, from the Village well, is also being used by at least one neighbouring village, as well as also supporting other households near the Village.

Unfortunately this well has also being drying up in the months of November/December, and then the Village has had to revert back to using their “old” source of water. The old “water-hole” is now overgrown and obviously not used. The water looks grey and stagnant. However, the leaders of the Village say there is a definite improvement in their health since they started using the water from the well and that there are definitely less stomach related sicknesses.


Due to a generous donation by Wishing Well International, we were able to install 5 water purification units in the Morrumbala region, one of them at the site of the well in the village. Hopefully now when they have to revert to their old water supply, the quality of the drinking water will still be of a high standard.

It was great to see God working through His people making the construction of these wells possible and the positive impact it is having not only God’s people in this Village in Mozambique, but the hundreds and hundreds people who are coming into contact with Jesus, at the well, when they come for a drink of cool clean water.


Our Sincere thanks go to Ken Lister from

H2O International SA (Pty) Ltd


Wishing Well International Foundation

for the donation of 5 Hydraid Bio-sand water filters which we were able to install in the Zambezia Province of Northern Mozambique, in and around the town of Morrumbala.

Having clean drinking water is a basic neccessity that most of us take for granted. In countries like Mozambique water sources are often contaminated by animals as well as run-off containing harmfull bacteria from excrement and decay. These filters are literally a life saving initiative that improve the life of all who drink from them.

In all cases, each home where the filters were installed agreed to provide their neighbours with clean drinking water too.

Manuel Vasco, pictured above was trained in installing the units, and would be able to undertake this without assistance in future, if neccessary.

The rate of flow was measured with all units and was between 400ml and 450ml per minute.

Consideral time was spent with each household explaining the importance of avoiding cross contamination, not using the equipment for any other purpose and not disturbing the unit in any way.

The process of instalation is shown below:

filling with
Filling with gravels

sealing filling

                                                                         Sealing and fitting diffuser Filling

The units were installed at the following locations:

home of mariano
Home of Mariano Binzihome of mariano S17.32765, E035.61500

home of barth
Home of Bartholomew Joaohome of barth S17.34920, E035.57379
home of simon
Home of Simon Vazhome of simon S17.33894, E035.59959

home of mariano bento
Home of Mariano Bentohome of mariano bento S17.33232, E035.60329

home of mauel
Home of Manuel Vascohome of mauel Fraqueza Village, about 4.5km North of Morrumbala, Zambezia
Wells in Africa Charity

Report: Mozambique Trip Easter 2012

Mozambique, Easter 2012

After 4 days of hard travelling, we arrived in Morrumbala a day later than we had planned, as progress was extremely slow, with 2 vans towing two heavily laden trailers, over some very bad roads.

The welcome when we arrived was truly moving, as they showed their appreciation of us being there through song and dance. We pitched our tents in the dark and fell asleep to the sounds of fellowship and song lasting into the early hours of the morning.

The plan had been to rise early Saturday morning and visit with the local chief, to inform him of our presence within the region, as well as get his permission to dig the well. Unfortunately, one of our Moz members had passed away in the night, and we awoke to the unmistakeable sounds of mourning, African style. The lady who had passed away had been ill for some time, although no one was sure of the exact cause. Her husband had passed away 2 years ago, and she now left her mother to raise her 4 children.

Eventually we did get to see the chief after a breakfast of maize porridge, and once we had finished negotiating a price to be paid to him, to allow us to dig the well in his region, (Yep, it didn’t make sense to me either!!!) I joined the rest of the well digging team (Mike Rabe, Dawie Maree and two labourers with well digging experience we had brought with us from SA) to decide on the site for the proposed well. After much discussion we finally decided that the well should be dug on the property that the Grace Communion International had recently bought, and where a headquarters and church building has been planned.

After a short service at the proposed site of the well, where we prayed that God would bless our efforts (as opposed to the feeding of the ancestors at the site that the chief had requested) digging started in earnest. I left Mike and Dawie to continue with the well, while I participated in the funeral.

The diggers did a fine job of removing soil from the well, bucket by bucket. By the end of Saturday we were all exhausted but progress had been good.

On Sunday morning, digging continued, until a cheer arose when water was finally struck in the first well, and then shortly after in the second. The excitement in the village was tangible. With water now easily accessible and unpolluted, life for them would never be the same again.

The well digging continued on Monday morning as we wanted to get well below the water table in order to provide a good supply of water throughout the year. By lunchtime, the first well was completed, but the second still required another 1/2m of digging, which we left them to complete.

We said our goodbyes and departed after lunch, knowing that we had a 3 day drive back home.

I would like to offer my sincere thanks to all who contributed so generously, to make what started off as a dream, turn into reality. The people we served have so little, and really do appreciate everything we do for them. I would especially like to thank Grace Communion International, Canada, for sponsoring the trip as well as Mike Rabe and Dawie Maree, who offered of their time, vehicles and expertise to help achieve this dream, but most especially for their friendship.

Joe, tollie
Joe, Tollie, Tim, Dawie and Mike with one of the vehicles that carried our well digging materials, just before leaving SA for Mozambique. An interesting aside is that both Joe and Tollie were Mozambiquians who had fled their country about 15 and 20 years ago, during the civil war. If you look closely, Joe has no ears- they were cut off as a lesson to him by the opposition. They were both very moved, to be going ‘home’ after so long.
Dawie and mike
Dawie and Mike, waiting not so patiently for customs to clear our goods. We were delayed for over 5 hours at the border post.
The Country
The CountryThe country is vast and towns far apart. We would just stop alongside the road and cook ourselves food and coffee before carrying on with the 2200km trip. We only averaged a speed of about 60km/hr.
On the second
On the second evening we were fortunate enough to find a service station, who hired out their garage to us to sleep in. (way more comfy than trying to sleep in the front seat of a van)
Dawie pitching his tent in the dark, when we eventually arrived at the conference
It's the
It’s theIt’s the job of the young women to collect water each day
At a
At a dirty waterhole a few kms away
Carrying it back, balanced on their heads, babies tied to their backs
the well
The well we found that had been dug by some locals nearby. Not only is it a danger to those passing by, but the children that were sent down to dig it faced the possibility of being buried alive if it had collapsed.
Tools we brought with us and gave to the village for well digging
the 20
The 20 sections of pipes we brought with us for lining the well were loaded on the trailers in SA by forklift, but required much manpower to offload.
the first
the firstThe first spadefull of almost 20 tons of soil that was removed from the two wells
it is
it isIt is important that the rings remain level, to avoid them separating as they slide into the ground
meanwhileMeanwhile Pastor Mariano starts the digging on the second well, in his village
Working down the well was difficult and cramped
to get
To get the well completed before we left, we worked well into the night, lighted by a generator.
Early Sunday morning, the first signs of water, at just under 5m. We dug a further 1.5m to ensure an adequate supply!
ThenThen we topped off the well. For now, water will be drawn by buckets, but we are still looking into reliable hand pumps that can be fitted.
A Mould
A MouldA mould was left with the villagers, and they were shown how to cast their own sections of pipes to line future wells they plan to dig.
Once offloaded the trailers became a viewing platform as well as a jungle-gym for the kids
Graveside.. a linen covered homemade wooden coffin
FLorianaFloriana Vontade Ofesse: 17/04/1969 -07/04/2012 Cause of death, unknown..