Shallow Wells Project

Groomsport Presbyterian Church is supporting The Shallow Wells Project in Livingstonia, Malawi over the next few months. 

The Aim of the project is to provide a source of clean water to rural villages in Northern Malawi.

The Primary Health Care Department (PHD) of the David Gordon Memorial Hospital in Livingstonia recognises that there is a need locally for clean water.  One in every three patients at the hospital are sick with an illness associated with not having fresh water.  These illnesses mean that people are unable to work and children cannot attend school as they wish.  This is a big problem and affects the local area as well as putting a strain on medical staff at the hospital.  

When clusters of patients come into the hospital with waterborne illnesses, the PHD staff visit the area and check the water source. If the water source is found to be inadequate, the Primary Health Care Department offers to help provide a well.

However, this is not as simple as just going into a village and digging a well. The villagers have to be on board with this project and the area must be suitable for a well. The Public Health Team will check this. The young men of the village are then enlisted to do the manual work such as the digging and making the bricks. The whole community gets involved in the project, which will become a valuable asset for them.

When the water table is at its lowest in August/September, the digging takes place. The wells are constructed to at least three feet below the water table and course gravel put in its base. The hospital supplies the cement for the linings, a pump, piping and a cap for the well. The well is specially designed to keep the surrounding area dry. This construction improves access and discourages mosquitoes which in turn would spread disease.

The wells cost around £500 depending on their depth and are ideally free of problems for ten years. The wells are looked after by an experienced management team who can maintain the wells should problems arise. A well would easily supply 50 people with clean water, which means that it costs £1 per person, per year for ten years, for this basic need. 

Auction Of Promises

The Mission Committee is planning to host an Auction Of Promises.  A similar event was held in the church back in 2000 and everyone involved in the event have reminisced that it was a great evening.  The Mission Committee call upon the congregation to support this event once again.   It is anticipated that the Auction of Promises will raise enough money to supply a well to a needy community in Malawi.  

The Auction will be held on Friday 7th June and there will be a supper provided.  

The full details of the evening have not been worked out yet, but be assured with what is already in place, the evening is bound to be an exciting one. 

 The last  Auction Of Promises provided a fascinating array of donated promises.  Many of those promises cost little to the provider but meant a great deal to the receiver. Some of the promises included: use of a trailer and driver for a few hours, boiled cakes, transfer of records or cassette recordings onto CDs, dog sitting, BBQ butcher meat, six months supply of toothpaste, grass cutting, car valeting, lifts to the shops or airport, and even a load of manure! Given how things have moved on in 19 years it will be interesting to see how technology appears in this set of promises.

Most of all it is important that everyone has fun with this event.  If you would like to help in any way, or you have any ideas for this evening, then please contact The Mission Committee by email

Here are the Promises that will be available for auction on the evening. Take a look through as see if there is anything that grabs your interest! Everyone is welcome on the night. Entrance is £5 and this includes a supper of sandwiches and desserts. There is no obligation to purchase anything. Come along and enjoy some fellowship and the excitement of the auction. If you are unable to be at the auction and you would still like to bid, please speak to Alastair McQuoid or contact him on 028 9188 3695 or by email

1. Lift to and from any Belfast Airport.
2. Trip to Newcastle or Portstewart.
3. Tea for up to four in my garden or garden room.
4. Boat trip on Lough Erne for up to four people.
5. Six shopping trips to Bangor or Newtownards.
6. Two Golf Lessons with a professional at Bangor Golf Club.
7. Afternoon tea for two at Crawfordsburn Inn.
8. A summer picnic for up to three people in June, July or August (three picnics available).
9. Set of four jams/marmalades (two sets available).
10. A mystery tour for up to three people, morning coffee and a picnic.
11. A large home baked crusty loaf once a week for four weeks.
12. Personalised portrait of your pet turned into professionally printed cards/notecards/similar by Summer.
13. Escorted day trip for two people to Montalto Estate and gardens, including morning coffee and lunch.
14. Two tickets for the musical ‘The King and I’ at Theatre at the Mill, Newtownabbey (Friday 1st November, front stalls).
15. Two night Donegal Break, including fishing for mackerel (weather permit) & make pate or whiskey tasting by the fire.
16. Three months supply of Colgate toothpaste – children and other specialist formulations available.
17. BBQ for four people in garden or beach in June.
18. A 12 portion cheesecake and a 12 portion banoffee supplied before 30th September.
19. Two nights B&B and two evening meals, also Sunday Lunch in Donegal Holiday home. Up to four people.
20. Car Wash while you have coffee at the Walter Nelson Hall on Saturday 3rd August.
21. Day trip for two to Ulster Museum/Botanical gardens and coffee or a picnic if its good weather.
22. Ten bags (approx total 1 kg) of homemade candy fudge suitable for a party or fundraising.
23. Four tickets for ‘Heatstroke’ a comedy produced by Bangor Drama Club in Studio A, Hamilton Road. 19th to 22nd June. (can be split).
24. A fully decorated Pavlova – 15/18 portions.
25. A manicure delight, nail shaping, cuticle tidy, shellac polish plus an arm & hand massage.
26. An 8 inch Christmas cake (decorated).
27. A meal for two in Pier 36, Donaghadee.
28. Dinner party for five (can be split).
29. I will feed and play with someone’s cat(s) while they are on holiday (Groomsport resident).
30. We will have a girly afternoon tea party in our house (or under the gazebo if the weather is good) for you and a friend.
31. A lunch for four people in my own home.
32. Two hour course on Excel Spreadsheets and a coffee.
33. A video golf lesson at Bangor Golf Club and a drink.
34. Will bake six Victoria sponges as required.
35. Lift to and from the airport for two people.
36. Afternoon tea for four at Rosspark Hotel, Kells, Ballymena.
37. Dinner with the intern in the Mini Manse.
38. Taster Tai Chi class for a group of ten or more.
39. Two large desserts for a dinner party.
40. I will provide two beaded necklaces and one beaded bracelet.
41. Lift to the International Airport and back.
42. Social Media training for a business; two to three hours for up to four people. Includes how to balance your audience needs with your boss’ goals. How to create engaging content and which tools to use to save time and money.43. Three 30 minute piano lessons in your own home, I can bring a keyboard.
44. A £25 voucher to be used in ULURO restaurant in Armagh.
45. Set of four jams/marmalades.
46. Set of four jams/marmalades.
47. A summer picnic for up to three people in June, July or August.
48. A summer picnic for up to three people in June, July or August.
49. Three hours of gardening: grass cutting or hedge trimming, planting or general tidying.