Wijhe petting zoo lets children become acquainted with water while enjoying themselves

The Board of Wijhe petting zoo aims to keep the zoo fun for children. Education and water play a key role in their efforts.

Wijhe petting zoo has constructed a water playground, enabling children to become acquainted with water while enjoying themselves. The water playground features a pump for children to pump up groundwater. Via a wooden structure, the groundwater subsequently flows to a wadi. Rainwater from the zoo’s rooftop also flows to this wadi. From the wadi, the water infiltrates into the subsoil.


In addition, an infiltration system with drainage pipes has been constructed, which transports water from the wadi to deeper groundwater aquifers. This is necessitated by shallow layers of clay in the soil, which hold back the infiltrating water. Without the infiltration system, the water could not penetrate the layers of clay to infiltrate to the subsoil. The system obviates the need for draining water through the sewers and thus helps to prevent waterlogging. Moreover, in the long run, rainwater infiltration helps to prevent dehydration.


Lessons to be learned

  • The main lesson to be learned from this project is that success is dependent on committed volunteers and sponsors. In addition to their daily animal care, petting zoo volunteers have also assisted in the construction work.
  • A good presentation, involving both visual images and an appealing story, has garnered a great deal of commitment. As a result, several grants have been awarded to the petting zoo for its renovation.

Contact person

Mark Jansen
Stichting Kinderboerderij Wijhe

Project type
Completed measure
Stichting Kinderboerderij Wijhe, Henk van Tongeren water en techniek, Waterschap Drents Overijsselse Delta, Gemeente Olst-Wijhe & Rabobank
District / neighborhood
Drought, Waterlogging