Water For Everyone — Togo

Water For Everyone — Togo

Water For Everyone — Togo

Water for Everyone is a border-to-border initiative encompassing Liberia, The Gambia, and Togo – to provide safe water to the entire population. In 2015, the United Nations General Assembly agreed upon 17 Sustainable Development GoalsSustainable Development Goal 6 (SDG6 or SDG 6) calls for clean water and sanitation for all people. In light of SDG6, Water Charity’s goal is to provide a basic supply of potable water to every person in Togo by the end of 2023.

Togo is a small but densely populated country in Western Africa, ranking 127th in the world for size, with a population of around 8 million. Being one of the narrowest countries in the world, with only 71 miles east-west between the borders of Ghana and Benin, it stretches south to north and as a result exhibits different climate.

The southern part of the country is a low coastal plain with extensive lagoons and marshes, while further north is the savanna – dry and arid. 67% of the country’s land is considered Agricultural, with Togo’s main exports being Cocoa Beans, Coffee, and Peanuts.

The Water for Everyone initiative kicked off in Togo in 2018 as 15 borehole wells were implemented in the Centrale region under the direction of Anne Jeton, hydrologist and Returned Peace Corps Volunteer.

Current estimates are that 55% of rural communities in Togo do not have access to an improved water source.

Water Charity’s goal is to work in collaboration with the Ministry of Hydrology and the Ministry of Health in Togo to bring improved water solutions, as well as training and education on basic sanitation to all these rural communities.

Collecting the data: border-to-border surveys

GPS-enabled mobile technology and GIS mapping are absolutely revolutionizing the data collection process in developing countries across the world. So far in Togo, Water Charity has trained over 50 individuals in collecting using tablets and smartphones, none of whom had ever done so before. Over 2018-19, Water Charity mapped the entirety of rural Togo. See below our Water Charity – Togo Storymap.

Water Testing

Once again, Sparrow Data Solutions has worked with Water Charity to develop a Water Testing application to be debuted in Togo. We accepted a request from the Ministry of Hydrology to begin running water testing in villages all over the Maritime region, something they have not previously been able to do.

Our Water Test is done using portable strips which test for 14 different components including pH, Hardness, Iron, Nitrates, and Total Chlorine. With the help of a local expert, we trained a team of 12 to operate the kits and record the results using tablets or smartphones.

Our 12 agents went back out to survey certain villages in the Maritime region – we decided to start by testing surface water sources across the region, which could include rivers, lakes, lagoons, etc. Thus far we have collected data on 224 different surface water sources in Maritime and are excited to share our findings with the Ministry of Hydrology to continue to grow a good working partnership.

We Need Your Support To fund Water Projects

From here we get to move to the fun part – implementation. This process is expected to take us to the end of 2024. Before we even start projects, this involves forming partnerships with local NGOs who will do most of the heavy lifting on the ground – supplying agents for filter distributions, following up on filter installs, organizing water committees, etc. It’s crucial for us to know who our major players are and have a set of standards that can apply to everyone across the board.

On the government level – each village or community in Togo has what’s called a “Village Development Committee” which is staffed by at least one responsible individual. Our job is to work with each village committee as well as local health centers where possible to ensure formation of a Water Committee each time we implement a project. The Water Committee is then responsible for the long-term sustainability of whatever implementation we come in with. The implementations can include but are not limited to – new manual or machine dug boreholes, repairs or rehabs on existing wells, water storage and distribution systems, and installation of Sawyer filters in individual households.

In addition to our primary objective to make access to potable water available to everyone, we are working with other organizations that operate in other development sectors, such as health, education, food security, the environment, and economic development, to improve the well-being of the people of Togo. In this regard, we are making available our technical capacity and database to others seeking to “do good”.

At this point, we are estimating to implement over 5,500 projects from now until the end of 2023. We are bringing in partners, large and small, foreign and local, to assist us in implementation, as well as to provide funding for our work on the ground.

We know the task ahead of us and it is a large one – now we need your help to make it happen!




Conclusion of Rancheria Salanueva Water Project – Mexico

Conclusion of Rancheria Salanueva Water Project – Mexico

Conclusion of Rancheria Salanueva Water Project – Mexico

Completion of the Water System for the residents of Rancheria Salanueva

The people in Salanueva are planning a big celebration to inaugurate the newly completed water system, as is the custom in the Sierra Madre.  Now that they know their water supply is secure, they are relieved that they no longer have to worry about how they will get by during the 7 months of the long dry season.  The coffee farmers among them now enjoy the certainty that they will be able to properly maintain the new plants they are growing in their nurseries for transplanting next spring.  The community leaders have long wanted to plant shade trees in their schools, cemetery and other spaces to beautify their community and create respite from the intense heat.  They are delighted that they will be able to maintain the shade trees we’ve provided for their communal spaces once the rainy season ends.

The work to bring water to the community got off to a slow start when the pandemic slowed down manufacturing and commerce in Chiapas.  The factory that produces the hose cut production dramatically, causing a backlog and a long delay until hose was available.  Fortunately we were able to obtain the materials needed and deliver them to the community. 

The men opted to build their holding tank before installing the hose in order to be able to store the large amount of water that would come from the deep pool at the source.  Once that was built it was only a matter of days with the men and youth working together to install the two and a half kilometers of hose and bury it along its course to protect it.  Now that the water is reaching all of the homes, we’ve been told to prepare ourselves for that celebratory feast.  The leader of the water committee sent a heartfelt message of thanks to all who made this important improvement in their lives possible. They are especially grateful to Michael and Carla Boyle for their generosity.  They send their gratitude to Water Charity. 

To read about the beginning of this project, CLICK HERE.

Gavilan Water Project – Mexico

Gavilan Water Project – Mexico

Gavilan Water Project – Mexico

This project is made possible through the partnership of WATER CHARITY and the NATIONAL PEACE CORPS ASSOCIATION.

This project has been completed.  To read about the conclusion, CLICK HERE.

Location
Gavilan, Chiapas, Mexico

Community Description
There are 38 families, with 216 inhabitants, living on the slopes that drop inland from the two-lane highway on the Continental Divide above. Gavilan is one of the remaining villages where elders still speak their original Mam language. They have been trying to revive their language so that youth will take an interest in their Maya roots. However, it is a poor community that offers little opportunity for young people. Many of them have opted to go to the United States to work to bring back money that would allow them to build a house for their young families.

The homes are typical of the region, is made of adobe with corrugated metal roofs with dirt floors. The people in Gavilan make a living off their land. They produce subsistence crops, mainly corn and beans, raise a few chickens, and sell squash on the edge of the highway at the end of the season. There is no coffee or other cash crop produced to afford them an income. Men try to find work as builders when possible. At least four households are headed by women whose husbands are working as undocumented immigrants in the U.S.

Problem Addressed
It has been well over 30 years since the government built a well-designed water system that has served the Gavilan community all these years. It withstood two major hurricanes and strong earthquakes. However, many sections of the galvanized steel pipe have corroded beyond repair, leaving the community to try to patch leaks as best they can with strips of tire inner tube or plastic bags. Whole sections leak with no way to stop the loss of vital water.

Now, in the summer of 2018, the Sierra Madre region is experiencing record heat and a drought that has everyone who must rely on the seasonal rains worried over how they will manage to raise the corn that they depend on to feed their families. By late July, the dry spell has lasted 5 weeks when normally raging thunderstorms should be replenishing the aquifer for the coming year. Throughout the region, the corn is drying up along with the hope for a good crop to provide the tortillas that are the mainstay of the diet of thousands of families in the high country.

Massive deforestation of the watershed took place several decades ago. As a result, there has seen a substantial drop in the amount of water flowing from springs and creeks. The people of Gavilan are worried that the water source they have relied on for all these years is flowing low due to the drought. This has never happened before in the middle of the rainy season.

Fortunately, thirty meters to the south of the existing water system there is a creek that has continued to flow despite the lack of rain. Next to that is another seep that can be diverted to feed into the upgraded system. The community has the rights to use that water.

Project Description
This project is to restore full water service to Gavilan by replacing damaged piping and building a catchment dam.

In order to ensure an adequate amount of water for the needs of the population, they intend to install 30 meters of new 3-inch galvanized steel pipe to the creek nearby in order to connect it to the mainline that flows into the existing tank from which it will be distributed to the homes.

A catchment dam will be built at the second source to collect the water. There is a third creek that they can divert to feed into the catchment dam. This will mean that two additional small, creeks will feed the system. They have verified that these two creeks flow all year long.

The men in the village are confident that they can do the work themselves to upgrade their water system. The people are delighted at the possibility that after years of unsuccessfully petitioning the municipality, there is hope that they can finally end the daily difficulties of not having enough water.

This project will provide water for domestic use to 38 households and supply water to the elementary school where children from Gavilan and surrounding communities receive an education.

Project Impact
216 people will benefit from the project.

Project Administration
The project will be administered by Tamara Brennan, Ph.D. of The Sexto Sol Center for Community Action, an award-winning non-profit that has had a permanent presence in the region since 1997, bringing water into the homes of over 8,000 people in the region.

Work will proceed in coordination with the Gavilan Water Association.

This project is the 18th water system project in the ongoing Sierra Madre Water Program, a comprehensive effort to improve water access in the underserved and impoverished Sierra Madre de Chiapas region of Mexico, spanning the border with Guatemala.

Fundraising Target
$5,400

Donations Collected to Date
$5,400

Dollar Amount Needed
$0 – This project has been funded through the generosity of Michael and Carla Boyle, of Nelsonville, Ohio.

Additional donations using the button below will go to future projects in Mexico.

   

   

   

Asociación de Agua Chapultepec Water System – Mexico

Asociación de Agua Chapultepec Water System – Mexico

Asociación de Agua Chapultepec Water System – Mexico

This project is made possible through the partnership of WATER CHARITY and the NATIONAL PEACE CORPS ASSOCIATION.

This project has been completed.  To read about the conclusion, CLICK HERE.

Location
Xelaju Ampliación, Los Pinos and Barrio Reforma, Motozintla, Chiapas, Mexico

Community Description
Many years ago, people living in three neighborhoods on the edge of the city of Motozintla formed their water committee in order to find a way to bring water into their homes. Today there are 70 families associated with the organization. Originally, they purchased a beautiful spring from the Ejido (peasant government) and have enjoyed the abundant, clear water for decades.

The homes are located in the neighborhoods of Xelaju Ampliación, Los Pinos and Barrio Reforma. The standard of living is very poor. The people in the association make their living as best they can, with the majority of the men working as day laborers when work can be found. Many have parcels of land in the hills where they grow corn during the rainy season to provide their families with the staple tortillas for the year. A few people have tiny storefronts in their homes where they sell Coke, soap, and snacks. Some families rely on the money sent by family members working in the United States as undocumented workers.

Problem Addressed
At the end of the dry season, the spring does not produce enough water for this large number of households. The water association has secured permission from the authorities to pipe water from the river nearby into the large pool where the uptake is for two months until the rains begin. They have tested this water, and while it is not suitable for cooking or drinking, it is fine for other household uses. This measure is being taken this year for the last weeks of the dry season until the rains begin and the clear water of the spring begins to bubble up from the subterranean river.

The hose that was installed years ago has deteriorated to the degree that it is no longer functional. There are innumerable leaks along the 3-kilometer length from the spring to the first homes. Usually, people use an old inner tube to bandage cracks but the association’s “fontanero”, the person in charge of maintaining the water system, reports that he cannot keep up with the damage as new cracks form in the old hose frequently. Roaming cattle are drawn to the puddled water where there are leaks and cause further damage to the hose when they try to pry it open with their hooves.

When people live day to day without a stable income, unexpected events like an illness or the unavoidable need to repair one’s home can be a great difficulty. As a result of their situation of poverty, they cannot afford the expense of upgrading their hose even though the lack of water further exacerbates the challenges of living in poverty.

Project Description
This project is to build a water system to serve 3 neighborhoods.

The work will consist of laying down 3 kilometers of 2-inch polyduct hose. PVC connectors will be used to join sections of hose and brass rings to securely fasten each section of hose to the connector to prevent vandals from disconnecting the hose. This has worked very well in other places to prevent the water pressure from forcing the joints apart. No structures will need to be built.

A heavy-duty uptake filter manufactured by Sexto Sol will eliminate the problem of leaves and debris clogging the hose. This has worked very well in other projects.

This is a simple project which can be accomplished quickly. The men are already organized and ready to do the work. The river valley is relatively flat, and the hose follows a good dirt road which will allow the supplier to deliver the hose directly to the places where it will be used at no additional cost.

Water Charity funds will be used to pay for the materials and skilled labor.

Project Impact
350 people will benefit from an ample supply of safe water.

Project Management
The project will be administered by Tamara Brennan, Ph.D. of The Sexto Sol Center for Community Action, an award-winning non-profit that has had a permanent presence in the region since 1997.

This project is the 17th water system project in the ongoing Sierra Madre Water Program, a comprehensive effort to improve water access in the underserved and impoverished Sierra Madre de Chiapas region of Mexico, spanning the border with Guatemala.

Monitoring and Maintenance
The people are well organized and are represented by elected leaders who direct the communal work that members do cooperatively. From small contributions from each family, they pay the fontanero to maintain the water system. He also regulates the use of the water which in this dry region must be rationed to ensure that all families receive an adequate supply for their household needs every week. They have recently built a formal structure around the spring to prevent people from contaminating the waters.

Project Funding
This project has been fully funded through the generosity of Michael and Carla Boyle, of Nelsonville, OH.

Please donate to the Sierra Madre Water Program – Mexico & Guatemala. Your contribution will allow us to continue to do important projects such as this one.

   

  

Conclusion of Asociación de Agua Chapultepec Water System – Mexico

This project has been completed under the direction of Tamara Brennan, Ph.D. of The Sexto Sol Center for Community Action. To read about the start of the project, CLICK HERE.

The project was designed to build a water system to serve 3 neighborhoods.

Tamara reports:

The project to upgrade the damaged water system for the Asociación de Agua Barrio Chapultepec has been successfully completed. As a result, 70 families living on the edge of the City of Motozintla now have water on tap. The continual worry about water is finally over for them.

The project proceeded easily once the materials were delivered. Teams of men worked together to dismantle the damaged PVC pipes that had been patched with plastic bags and baling wire for so many years. These were replaced with the flexible hose that will serve the communities for decades. The hose was suspended from tall concrete posts over the riverbed to protect it from torrential rains. They greatly appreciated the custom built water filter that we provided to them for the uptake into the water system. This will prevent leaves and debris from entering the hose. Our design is much better than the typical filters sold locally that corrode quickly and fill up with sand that has to be cleaned out every few days.

It should be noted that the rainy season of 2018 has been extremely dry. For weeks at the height of the growing season there was no rainfall causing significant crop failure over the Sierra Madre region and Guatemala. Corn is the traditional staple of the diet for these people. This coming year families will not have their corn harvest to rely on for food. Fortunately, with the water now available, they are better equipped to keep vegetables and fruit trees watered when the heat of spring comes.

However, as a result of the extreme drought, at one point the very large natural pool that the Chapultepec Water Association has used as a source of water for many years dried up. This had never happened before. When the rain finally began to fall again, the water level rose to its normal state. Nevertheless, people are concerned about the impact that this drought will have on the availability of water in April and May. For this reason, the water association decided to look for an additional source of water farther up the slope as a backup that will feed into the original pool.

The leaders of the water association came to the Sexto Sol office to formally offer their thanks for this significant improvement to the lives of the families they represent. They said that people feel tremendous relief that the difficulties are over. They offer their heartfelt thanks to Michael and Carla Boyle and Water Charity for making this project possible.

We extend our thanks to Tamara for completing this important project, and for her outstanding work in the region. We are also grateful for the continuing support of the Boyles.

 

       

 

   

Loma Linda Water Project – Mexico

Loma Linda Water Project – Mexico

Loma Linda Water Project – Mexico

This project is made possible through the partnership of WATER CHARITY and the NATIONAL PEACE CORPS ASSOCIATION.

This project has been completed.  To read about the conclusion, CLICK HERE.

Location
Loma Linda, Chiapas, Mexico

Community Description
Deep in the Sierra Madre Mountains in Chiapas, Mexico there is no television in the homes. In Loma Linda, there is no Internet either, and cell phones only have the reception at 6 a.m. for a little while. So, children enjoy a childhood freed from technologies that would otherwise make them sit still and opt for passive entertainment. Instead, they run and play all day in the rainforest and coffee groves. Teenagers spend afternoons shooting hoops at the school. It looks like what childhood used to be.

Loma Linda is home to 280 residents. All households depend on growing coffee for a living which affords people the most meager of incomes in good years. Recently, however, the rust plague, which is widely believed to be the result of the warming climate, has dramatically reduced yields. While a few families have small stores fronts in their homes, everyone grows their own corn and beans to keep their families fed. They raise a few chickens for the eggs and for meat a couple of times a year on special occasions.

Problem Addressed
Loma Linda is another of the many villages in this impoverished mountainous region that suffered the destruction of essential infrastructure when Hurricane Stan did its damaged in 2005. The water system that they had relied on for many years was damaged beyond repair. Families have had to get water as best they can from tiny springs and creeks that inevitably dry up in the spring.

They have tried unsuccessfully to get help from the municipality of Siltepec on many occasions. Every time there is an election, the candidates have made promises to fix this situation. No one has followed through with their promises in eleven years.

Beyond the extreme inconvenience of raising a family without water, the lack of access to water has had a specific impact on household economies in the village. When the coffee is harvested it must be thoroughly washed on the same day to remove the fruit from the bean. Unfortunately for Loma Linda coffee farmers, right about the time the coffee beans have been painstakingly picked from trees on steep mountainsides, the local springs dry up. This means that farmers cannot properly wash the coffee. Instead, the sticky fruit pulp ferments on the beans and pretty much destroys their hopes of being able to obtain a good price for what would otherwise be considered exceptionally attractive coffee sought after by specialty buyers abroad.

Project Description
This project is to build a water system for Loma Linda.

The community has identified two perennial creeks that are near each other. The system will draw water from each creek and bring it in one hose to a tank from which it will be distributed to all homes. The population has grown in the past decade since the natural disaster so this new system has been designed to provide water to new homes higher up the mountainside.

The plan is to build a dam at the highest end of each creek using what is called “piedra ahogada” construction whereby the masons use rock from the site that is encased in concrete reinforced with rebar. This is the strongest construction possible and is cost-effective since rock from the area will be used.

The distribution tank will also be built with rock and will be reinforced with “armex” in the traditional way to insure that it can withstand the pressure of the water when full. Armex is a rectangular structure made of rebar that is used to reinforce concrete columns. The water will come from the creeks in a 2″ hose for over a little more than 2 kilometers. The entire system will rely on gravity to bring the water to homes.

Loma Linda residents have formed a new water committee to oversee the work needed to build the new water system and to organize the work required to maintain the system once completed. They will insure that all residents properly conserve the water. Community members have agreed to work together to complete all work required to create a system that will last many decades. They are committed to making sure that all people living in the community benefit from the project with no household being left out due to topography.

This village is located in the same valley where Sexto Sol and Water Charity have already successfully completed three water projects: Santa Domingo La Cascada, Cipresal La Cascada, and Hermosillo. The 9-kilometer road from the highway to the area is paved most of the way. Local providers sell cement and other building materials in La Cascada eliminating the need to transport materials from Motozintla, the city 3 hours away.

Project Impact
280 people will benefit from the project.

Project Manager
The project will be administered by Tamara Brennan, Ph.D. of The Sexto Sol Center for Community Action, an award-winning non-profit that has had a permanent presence in the region since 1997.

This project is the 12th water system project in the ongoing Sierra Madre Water Program, a comprehensive effort to improve water access in the underserved and impoverished Sierra Madre de Chiapas region of Mexico, spanning the border with Guatemala.

Monitoring and Maintenance
The water committee will monitor the functioning of the system, and perform maintenance and repairs. Sexto Sol will periodically check to ascertain that the system is working properly.

Comments
This project is the 11th water system project in the ongoing Sierra Madre Water Program, a comprehensive effort to improve water access in the underserved and impoverished Sierra Madre de Chiapas region of Mexico, spanning the border with Guatemala.

Fundraising Target
$6,500

Funds raised in excess of the project amount will be allocated to other projects in the country.

Donations Collected to Date
$6,500

Dollar Amount Needed
$0 – This project has been funded through the generosity of Michael and Carla Boyle, of Nelsonville, Ohio.

If you wish to donate for our next project in Mexico, please use the Donate button below.

   

Conclusion of Loma Linda Water Project – Mexico

 

This project has been completed under the direction of Tamara Brennan, Ph.D. of The Sexto Sol Center for Community Action. To read about the start of the project, CLICK HERE.

The project was designed to build a water system for Loma Linda.

Tamara reports:

When the elected representative of Loma Linda community first came to ask for help, he cited the lack of water as a major impediment to farmers being able to sell their coffee for a good price. For this reason, this project began with a challenge to get the water flowing in time for the 2018 coffee harvest.

Despite a major delay when a large landslide cut off the road during the rainy season, we did it! By mid-January the farmers began picking their coffee while having the confidence that they could finally properly prepare it for sale. This will help them in the future to be able to join collectives that seek to directly export their exceptional coffee for a better price.

It took a lot of intense effort build the water system given how the three structures that were built required hauling heavy stone and sand up steep cliffs from creek beds below. Horses were used to move the heavy material.

Two dams were built, one at the head of each creek. One of these required the men to manage passing the rock up a small cliff at the base of the dam. They are pleased with the way the stone holding tank turned out since the goal was to build a solid structure that would last for decades. A metal lid was installed that is locked to prevent vandalism.

The people in Loma Linda village extend their most sincere thanks to Michael and Carla Boyle, sponsors of this project, for kindly giving them the opportunity to make this significant improvement to their quality of life. Please note that the population in the village will increase by 1 this March, a week before the planned inauguration celebration is to take place.

We extend our thanks to Tamara for completing this important project and again thank the Boyles for providing the funding.

   

   

Kharkhorin Main Hospital Water Purification Project – Mongolia

Kharkhorin Main Hospital Water Purification Project – Mongolia

Kharkhorin Main Hospital Water Purification Project – Mongolia

Location
Ovorhangai aimag, Kharkhorin soum, Mongolia

Community Description
The town of Kharkhorin is a large soum with a population of about 15,000 residents. The town itself consists of three neighborhoods (bags) and there are another five neighborhoods that are in the surrounding countryside.

Kharkhorin Main Hospital Water Purification Project – Mongolia

Kharkhorin is one of Mongolia’s ancient capital cities. It is home to a working monastery (irden zo), as well as giant stone turtles that mark the ancient boundaries of the once magnificent city.

The town of Kharkhorin is located along the Orkhon River. Roughly 100 km up river from the town is a mine that has produced contamination that has eliminated the fish population and heavily mineralized the water of the river.

The Kharkhorin Main Hospital currently accommodates 74 patients, and is staffed by 16 doctors, 36 nurses and 49 other workers.

Depending on the time of year the hospital draws its water from the river and from wells. The river is frozen in the winter.

Safe water is not available in the hospital, and the families of most patients bring fluids from their homes or stores. Giardia and other parasites are present in the well water of the town.

Illustrative of the mineral contamination, it is noted that all of the tea kettles and water boilers at the hospital are caked with sediment and metals.

At the hospital, drinking water for the patients and staff currently comes from a large open pot in the kitchen, which is boiled every morning or as demand requires.

Project Description
This project is to purchase and install a four-filter water purification system to provide safe water for the hospital. The high-capacity filter will produce hot and cold filtered water, and will be installed in a high-traffic area. It will produce water to be used for all of the drinking and cooking needs of the hospital.

The system uses one sediment filter, one pre-carbon filter, one post-carbon and a UF membrane filter.

Kharkhorin Main Hospital Water Purification Project – Mongolia The four filters work together to remove organic and inorganic materials. The filters will clean the water of 99.99% of particles, sediment and heavy medals, cysts, parasites, and pathogenic bacteria, including e coli, cryptosporidium, giardia, and salmonella.

The plumbing and installation will be done by hospital employees. The hospital will pay for the replacement as necessary of the filter stages, and will follow a standardized maintenance schedule.

Trainings on the importance of clean water as well as the maintenance of the system will be conducted.

Project Impact
This project will benefit 175 people at any point in time.

Peace Corps Volunteer Directing Project
Nicholas Swope

Comments
The health and well-being of all patients and staff will be greatly improved through access to clean water.

Dollar Amount of Project
$555.00

Donations Collected to Date
$555.00

Dollar Amount Needed
$0.00 – This project has been fully funded through the generosity of the Elmo Foundation.

We encourage others to continue to donate using the Donate button below, and we will notify Peace Corps Volunteer Nicholas Swope of your donation. Additional funds will be used to fund the next project by Nicholas and/or those of other PCVs in the country of service.

This project has been completed. To see the results, CLICK HERE.

Conclusion of Kyamue Village Rainwater Catchment Project – Kenya

Conclusion of Kyamue Village Rainwater Catchment Project – Kenya

Conclusion of Kyamue Village Rainwater Catchment Project – Kenya

This project has been completed under the direction of Peace Corps Volunteer Laken Rippentrop.

To read about the beginning of the project, CLICK HERE.

The project was to build a rainwater catchment system to capture and store water for drinking, household use, and irrigation.

Laken reports:

The project is now completed. I have also successfully completed my Peace Corps service.

The project started off well. We were able to purchase the materials for the gutters and install them well under the one month mark.

The materials were all easily accessible in a town about 7 kms from the project site. The group purchased them and hired the “fundi” (artisan/worker) to assist in putting them up. Then the rains came in late April and everyone in the area was thrilled at the large amount of water that they now had access to without having to go to the river.

Acquiring the drip irrigation kit was not as easy as we originally expected. The materials for the gutters turned out to be a bit cheaper than expected so we were able to afford the brand new drip irrigation kit. The only problem was that when we called the company, which is based in Nairobi, the kits were out of stock and they weren’t sure when they were going to get more. So, we continued calling and calling and finally, near the beginning of June, they had received new kits.

The group then organized themselves to arrange which group member was going to travel to Nairobi to pick up the kit and transport it back to the project site. Once it arrived back at the site, the group hit another little road bump when installing it. They were concerned about their ability to do it without the assistance of a professional. The company from which they purchased the kit offered installation, but at a very steep price.

Finally, around mid-July, they were able to get the local technical officer from the Ministry of Agriculture to come to help them install it (and he did it free of charge!). After that, the group was responsible for acquiring the materials and constructing a stand on which to put the water tank in order for the drip kit to work.

They started using it a few weeks ago and ecstatic cannot even begin to describe how happy they are. I believe they will have their first harvest of tomatoes using the drip kit within the month. They are really looking forward to the upcoming rainy season during which they will be able to use both the rainwater catchment and the drip kit.

On behalf of Talamak Self-Help Group and the entire Kyamue Village, thank you so much for your assistance in developing the community and uplifting its members.

We, in turn, are grateful to Laken for completing the project, and again wish to thank the Elmo Foundation for providing the funding.

   

   

   

   

Niquivil Water System Project – Mexico

Niquivil Water System Project – Mexico

Niquivil Water System Project – Mexico

This project is made possible through the partnership of WATER CHARITY and the NATIONAL PEACE CORPS ASSOCIATION.

Location
Niquivil, Sierra Madre de Chiapas, Mexico
Community Description
Niquivil is the largest community in the eastern part of the municipality of Motozintla.  The town is located at an elevation of 9,200 feet on the border with Guatemala and is home to 220 families.
Unlike other parts of the Sierra Madre, at this elevation, it is not possible for people to grow coffee as a cash crop.  Most households grow vegetables, corn or potatoes on a small scale for their own use with surplus being sold.   The standard of living is very poor.  Since Niquivil is a border crossing, some households make a meager living by selling goods from Mexico to people in communities on the other side of the border.  Many families must depend on the money sent to them by a member of their family who is working in the U.S. as an undocumented worker.
Problem Addressed
Many years ago, the government built a large holding tank for the community and put in pipe to bring water from a creek up slope.  Unfortunately, part of the pipe was stolen.  The community of 1540 people has been trying to get by with only a ¾ inch PVC hose to bring the water to the tank.  This is very inadequate for the needs of such a large population.
Project Description
The project is to install hose to connect the spring catchment, where water is collected, to a water point in the village.
The town is located about an hour from Motozintla on a paved road.  The hose will be delivered to Motozintla and the people in the town will then ferry it to their community at their expense.  There are people with small trucks and the villagers can contribute a small sum for the gas.
This project will be completed quickly by the men from the community who will do the necessary work.  The hose will follow an established route from a functioning tank on the river to a functioning holding tank.  All that is needed is 3.4 kilometers of hose and residents will then be able to enjoy the improved quality of life that reliable access to water provides.
Project Impact
1,540 men, women and children will have reliable access to water for decades to come.
Volunteer Directing Project
Tamara Brennan
Monitoring and Maintenance
The town will be responsible for the care and maintenance of their new hose.  If problems arise that they are unable to deal with, Tamara’s Sexto Sol office can be contacted and Water Charity would be happy to consider follow-up projects that might be needed.
Comments
This project is part of a series of projects that Water Charity has undertaken in the region in concert with the Sexto Sol Center for Community Development. Other projects in this ongoing effort to help some of the poorest people in Mexico can be found HERE – Sierra Madre Water Program.
Dollar Amount of Project
$4,100
Donations Collected to Date
$4,100
Dollar Amount Needed
$0.00 – This project has been fully funded, through the generosity of Michael and Carla Boyle, of Nelsonville, OH, USA.
This project has been completed.  To see the conclusion of the project, CLICK HERE.

Additional amounts will go to other projects in Mexico.

   
   
Kors Ream Primary School Well and Water System Project – Cambodia

Kors Ream Primary School Well and Water System Project – Cambodia

Kors Ream Primary School Well and Water System Project – Cambodia

This project is made possible through the partnership of WATER CHARITY and the NATIONAL PEACE CORPS ASSOCIATION.

Location
Kors Ream Primary School, Kors Ream Village, Bavel District, Battambang Province, Cambodia

Community Description
Kors Ream is a farming village located in rural Battambang, Cambodia. The Kors Ream Primary School is the only primary school in the village. Nine teachers educate 360 students aged 4 to 13 years old.

Problem Addressed
A challenge the primary school faces is the lack of water access. For years the school depended on rainwater and a pond situated in the back of the school as their primary source of water for basic needs.

Rainwater is not a dependable source in Cambodia, especially during the dry season. The pond situated behind the school contained contaminated water that caused skin irritations for the students. A neighboring pond was then used as an alternative; however, the students encountered the same skin irritations. Currently, both ponds are drained, leaving the school to become dependent on the two large rainwater jars the school owns and a neighbor’s well, which is already shared between three families.

The school has no history of securing an adequate, uncontaminated water supply. The director and teachers of the primary school have communicated concerns regarding the health of their students due to the lack of clean water. The consequences are diarrhea, skin disease, respiratory illnesses, intestinal and other waterborne diseases, lessening the number of times children are in school.

Rainwater collection jars have been an inefficient method to store water for the primary school. Two of the four rainwater collection jars owned by the school have shattered due to the lack of water being stored inside the jars. The school has expressed interest in a well, structures for water storage and usage, as well as educating students on the importance of proper hand washing and safe drinking water.

Project Description
Local construction workers will construct a well in front of the primary school. A hole will be dug 40 meters deep and 40 centimeters in diameter. A motor will be used to pump water out of the well.

Local construction workers will also situate a 300-liter water storage container on top of a 6-meter stand made of steel.  A 3-meter by 6-meter hand washing station will be built next to the latrines behind the primary school.

Two primary school teachers and the Peace Corps volunteer will conduct an educational demonstration to promote proper hand washing techniques for each of the nine classrooms of the school, educating all 360 students over the course of five days.

The primary school will provide bars of soap to the hand washing station at all times.

Project Impact
360 students and 9 teachers will benefit. (As well as anyone else who comes to visit the school.)

Peace Corps Volunteer Directing Project
Evalynn Romano

Monitoring and Maintenance
The Kors Ream Primary School will maintain the water source and will educate students on the importance of hand washing.

Comments
Instead of a large community bio-sand filter, as envisioned, Water Charity will provide the school with a ceramic water filter for each of the 9 classrooms.  These filters are even more effective at eliminating microbe pathogens, and will allow easier access to drinking water for the children.

Dollar Amount of Project
$2,900

Donations Collected to Date
$100

Dollar Amount Needed
$2,800

This project has been completed!  To read about the conclusion, CLICK HERE.

ADOPT THIS PROJECT BY CONTRIBUTING THE DOLLAR AMOUNT OF THE PROJECT.
Donations of any amount will be appreciated. The full amount will allow you a posted dedication, if that is something you would like.

Conclusion of Kors Ream Primary School Well and Water System Project – Cambodia

Conclusion of Kors Ream Primary School Well and Water System Project – Cambodia

Conclusion of Kors Ream Primary School Well and Water System Project – Cambodia

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

A summary of the completion report for the KORS REAM PRIMARY SCHOOL WELL AND WATER SYSTEM PROJECT – CAMBODIA:
Peace Corps Volunteer Directing Project: Evalynn Romano

SCOPE OF PROJECT DESCRIPTION:

The aim of the water project for the Kors Ream Primary School was to implement a strategy for water supply, sanitation and hygiene by means of a well, a hand washing station, water storage containers, a steel stand, and ceramic water filters. The goal was to help the teachers and students of the primary school gain access to water and sanitation in order to achieve safe, clean latrines and water for hand washing, drinking and irrigating the school vegetable garden, in hopes of creating a safe learning environment that supports the health of the primary school students, increasing the number of times students attend school.

SPECIFIC WORK COMPLETED:

With the help of the funds provided by Water Charity, a well, a hand washing station and a steel stand to support water storage containers were constructed. In addition, two 2,000-liter water storage containers and nine ceramic water filters (one for each classroom) were purchased. The school contributed about 55% of the funds for the second water storage container. Additionally, the teachers planned and organized a school-wide hand washing education day.

PROGRESSION OF PROJECT THROUGH EACH STAGE:

The construction of the well was the first stage of the project. The community was hopeful, however not entirely confident, that water would be found beneath school grounds. The primary school director invited respected men in the village to pray to the gods for water and arranged an offering. After four days of digging, and digging 10 meters deeper than planned, water was found, and the community was overjoyed. The local workers involved in the construction of the well were interested in helping the needs of the primary school and gave a 20% discount for their services.

The next step was the construction of a 3-meter steel stand to support two 2,000-liter water storage tanks, and the hand washing station. Although the local construction workers have a vast background in their work, they had never constructed a hand washing station before. After just 10 days, a well-constructed hand washing station was situated just outside the latrines.

The station includes a roof to protect it from the rain and a fence that allows the school director and teachers to lock the station during summer vacation. These small but important additions were vital in preserving the hand washing station and allowing long-lasting usage. The local construction workers were happy to be involved with this project as they have children attending the primary school, and gave a discount for their services as well.

The hand washing station was nice, but needed some color. The Peace Corps Volunteer organized a mural to be painted on the hand-washing station walls with the help of primary school students. The mural involved visuals and instructions in Khmer on the steps of hand washing as a reminder for the students. The students really enjoyed watching the daily progression of the mural. Several primary school students were able to contribute to the mural by painting their handprints, which became an entertaining activity and memory for them. The students are very happy and excited about their new, colorful hand washing station.

The ceramic water filters were implemented in each classroom. The only source of drinking water on school grounds had been the bottles of water sold in shops and stands around the school that the students would have to purchase. The water filters provide students with easy access to free drinking water.

Finally, a school-wide day of hand washing education was organized. The interactive sessions included asking questions to test the current knowledge of the students, games that helped students to visualize the spreading of germs, a play put on by primary school students of a family at mealtime, a song and dance on hand washing, and then encouraging students to utilize the newly constructed hand washing station to demonstrate what they had just learned. The students were excited to learn about hand washing in the interactive and entertaining methods the teachers used.

The primary school held a celebration for the completion of the project. The school invited monks and members of the community to gather in honor of the donations received. Everyone was in bright spirits and happy to come together for the festivities.

FURTHER UPDATE:

This week, I attended a ceremony held by the primary school for the retirement of the current school director and the beginning of a new director. I was presented with a certificate in your organization’s name for the donations that you have given. The school and the community are still very grateful for your support and wanted to make sure that you saw your certificate. They wanted me to send it to you, but I’m not sure that it would make it in one piece.  (WC Note: We don’t need the Certificate, but thanks for sending the pic.)

END RESULT:

The Kors Ream Primary School now has the resources needed for a water supply, sanitation and hygiene. The community is proud to finally secure these resources on school grounds after many years of unfilled promises from different organizations.

REACTIONS AND QUOTES:

“I am very happy for the generous donation. Thank you very much from the school director, teachers and members of the Kors Ream village community. This is the first time any school from the commune is able to secure a well from an organization. It will help students have good health and study well. I wish you a lot of success and happiness.” – Mr. Hem Sophat, primary school director

“Cool!” – primary school students, in regards to the hand washing station and mural

We would like to thank Evalynn once again for executing such a fine project.  We are honored to have been involved in helping this wonderful community.

Though completed, this project still needs donations to recoup the funds pre-funded at the outset.  Consider adopting this very worthy project, and enjoy the great pictures below.