Conclusion of Bujama Colegio Water and Sanitation Project – Peru

This project has been completed under the direction of Peace Corps Volunteer Katelyn Meehan. To read about the beginning of the project, CLICK HERE.

The project was to replace the broken water pump and service the septic tank at the school.

Katelyn reports:

This project was a great success due to the involvement and cooperation of the community of Bujama. The school, local health post, and the local plumber were all involved!

The Director of the school diagnosed the water and sanitation issues that the school was facing, and from there we contracted local help to execute the solutions. One of the biggest obstacles for the school regarding these themes was that one of the water pumps was broken. This kept water from being pumped from the ground to the sinks and toilets, leaving no running water for hand washing or toilet flushing. Instead, children were filling buckets in order to perform these duties, which often led to unsanitary situations. The other obstacle for the school was that the septic tank was long overdue for its bi-annual cleaning.

The director of the school hired a local plumbing service to complete both of these activities: the replacement of the broken water pump and the cleaning of the septic tank. The labor was done over the weekend, as for safety and sanitation issues. Nobody was permitted to be in the school during the cleaning of the tank.

Now the children are able to wash themselves at the sink with running water, and flush their toilets with ease!!

With the remaining money from the project, soap and soap dispensers were bought for the sink area, and garbage cans and garbage bags were bought for the school. This is in addition to our current recycling project, where we are separating garbage into three categories: garbage, paper, and plastic/aluminum/glass. In Peru, you are able to sell recycled items, and this will allow the school to generate a little extra income to maintain sanitary supplies, such as soap and garbage bags.

When the soap dispensers were installed in the school, the local nurse from the health post was invited to give a hand washing demonstration to the students. We also created a picture story for the younger students to help them to remember to wash their hands.

Thank you so much for the opportunity to do this project!! The schools in the rural areas of Peru are lacking so much, and I think on a certain level it affects the learning ability of the students.

The Director was so proud to be able to provide his school with the basic necessities it is lacking, for he knows that the improvement will mean so much to the students. They love to be able to run up to the sink and use running water and wash their hands after using the bathroom, or after recess, or before lunch! It is amazing what a difference the smallest changes can make! Thank you again so much!!

We wish to thank Katelyn for completing this project, and again extend our gratitude to The Soneva SLOW LIFE Trust for providing the funding.