The mission of Water Charity is to implement immediate, efficient, and practical projects around the world to provide safe water and effective sanitation to those in need.


Conclusion of Saly Escale Well Project – Senegal

Conclusion of Saly Escale Well Project – SenegalThis project has been completed under the direction of Peace Corps Volunteer Matthew Gardine. To read about the beginning of the project, CLICK HERE.

This project was to build a new well to provide potable water for community use, and also yield water for the irrigation of the community garden.

To read Matthew’s final report in its entirety, CLICK HERE. It makes great reading, providing an insight into the process, incorporating valuable sociological observations, and revealing the tremendous benefits that the project will yield for the community.

Here is a summary of the key points taken from the final report:

Community leaders determined that a new well was a primary need for the village. Because of the growth of Saly Escale, most of the compounds now sit a great distance from the only other well in the community. A large amount of time was being spent by girls and women to carry basins of water to their homes in the mornings and early evenings, time which could be better spent.

Conclusion of Saly Escale Well Project – SenegalIn addition, a year-round gardening program could not be sustained without obtaining a nearby source of water for irrigation.

The project became a reality when a commitment for funding was obtained. Shortly thereafter, in December, 2010, the funding was received and the project was underway with the purchase of supplies in Koungheul, Saly Escale’s nearest large town. In addition to the requisite pickaxes, shovels, buckets, and iron-working tools, we ordered four tons of cement that would line the well’s internal walls as well as the iron reinforcement rods that would be fashioned to form the well’s metal “skeleton.” Both sets of materials were purchased in quantities that would insure uninterrupted construction to a depth of 20 meters, should the water table have sunk that low by the height of the drought season in April and May.

The next step was to determine the well’s exact location, utilizing the services of a descendent of a long line of “water seekers,” people reputedly capable of discovering the path of least resistance to the best underground water sources.

Ground was broken on 6 February 2011 by the master digger and a team of three associate diggers. They dug with pickaxes and shovels and without the aid of machines. Knowing the depth of the village’s existing well, we estimated the depth of the water table to be 16 meters.

On 24 March 2010 the diggers struck water at a depth of 12 meters, but, due to a sudden onset of stomach illness, the master digger was unable to continue digging the remaining few meters that would insure a reliable water source during both rainy and drought seasons in which the water table tends to fluctuate dramatically.

Returning to work in late April (the height of the drought season), the master digger finally dug the well to its current depth and the above-ground rim was constructed.

Immediately thereafter, the concrete “skirt” was fashioned at its base. The skirt serves to direct outside water and pollutants away from the well, thus preventing contamination.

On 26 April 2011, my home stay host, my work partner, and I met with the master digger one final time to measure the well’s depth (15.5 m), verify contract compliance, and provide full and final payment.

We extend our deep gratitude to Matthew for completing this project, and again wish to thank The Montgomery College Office of Study and Travel Abroad, and the students of Montgomery College for providing the funding.

Conclusion of Saly Escale Well Project – SenegalConclusion of Saly Escale Well Project – Senegal
Conclusion of Saly Escale Well Project – SenegalConclusion of Saly Escale Well Project – Senegal
Conclusion of Saly Escale Well Project – SenegalConclusion of Saly Escale Well Project – Senegal
Conclusion of Saly Escale Well Project – SenegalConclusion of Saly Escale Well Project – Senegal

Jaidee Daycare Center Flood Remediation and Water Project – Thailand

Jaidee Daycare Center Flood Remediation and Water Project – ThailandThe Jaidee Daycare Development Center is a children’s center under the supervision of Jaidee Sub-District Administrative Office located in Thailand’s Northeastern province of Sisaket.

Jaidee Daycare accommodates 60 students, ages 2-4. The building experiences two significant problems, namely flooding during the rainy season and the poor quality of water for the consumption of students and staff. This project, under the direction of Peace Corps Volunteer Heidi Mahoney, addresses both problems.

The daycare building itself sits on a lowland silt area. Often during the monsoon rainy season, rain pours down in short, yet heavy showers. During these torrential rains, water mixed with mud, silt, and various ground residue, gushes into the daycare building. This causes a huge mess that often makes it necessary to close the building, and results in highly unhygienic conditions and increased susceptibility to water-borne disease.

Jaidee Daycare Center Flood Remediation and Water Project – ThailandThe first part of this project addresses the flooding issue by constructing a new drainage system and elevating common ground around the daycare with concrete beams.

Two diagonal gutters starting at the roof will funnel rainwater into a drain connected to the village drainage system. In addition, concrete beams affixed around the structure will prevent water from entering the building.

Currently, there is no running water in the building, other than in the bathrooms. Most importantly, the water quality is not guaranteed. Water for personal use is accessed from local wells filled with unsanitary ground water, which is often unsuitable for even hand-washing and brushing teeth.

Jaidee Daycare Center Flood Remediation and Water Project – ThailandThe daycare teachers have to purchase large jugs of drinking water to stock the daycare. Also, there are no sinks for dish washing or for children to wash their hands before and after meals and after using the restroom.

The second part of this project is for the purchase of a water purification tank connected to a common water canteen as well as the installation of sinks with running water.

Project funds will be used for the tank and PVC supply and drainage piping. Labor will be provided by the community.

In addition to the day care teachers and children, approximately 1,452 local villagers will be able to access this water source for drinking and household use.

This project has the support of teachers, parents, and local administrators who recognize its importance and have pledged the necessary resources. This will ensure the sustainability of the project far into the future.

This project has now been fully funded through the generosity of The Soneva SLOW LIFE Trust as a part of their Clean Water Projects initiative.

We encourage others to continue to donate using the Donate button below, and we will notify Heidi of your donation. Additional funds will be used to fund the next project by the PCV and/or other projects in the country of service.

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

Conclusion of Gregorio Ferro-Cement Tank and Rainwater Catchment Project – Brazil

Conclusion of Gregorio Ferro-Cement Tank and Rainwater Catchment Project – BrazilThis project has been completed under the direction of Rosângela Araújo, Vice President of Instituto Diamante Verde (IDV). To read about the beginning of the project, CLICK HERE.

The project was to build a rainwater catchment system and ferro-cement tank in the village of Gregório.

Rosângela reports:

It took 5 months to complete the project, under the direct supervision of Professor Manuela, now elected head of the Association and representative of the Instituto Diamante Verde in Gregório.

This year something really amazing happened in Queimadas/Gregório village. During the summer season 2010/2011, the news showed the tragic scene of 22 villages facing water shortages due to a lack of rain. However, due to the adoption of a program to build ferro-cement tanks, Queimadas had the capacity to capture sufficient rainwater to fulfill the basic consumption needs of the communities that make up the municipality.

Conclusion of Gregorio Ferro-Cement Tank and Rainwater Catchment Project – BrazilThe pictures show the proven construction techniques that resulted in the completion of the collection and storage system in Quemadas. As a result, 580 people now have an adequate water supply.

The completion of this project makes possible additional development efforts, under the direction of IDV, for the benefit of the community. These include a tree nursery and erosion control program as well as a gardening program to grow organic vegetables, legumes and fruits for the consumption of the students. Finally, moringa trees are being planted around the natural water source. This not only prevents evaporation but also produces leaves and other components with significant nutritional benefit.

We wish to extend our thanks to Rosângela for carrying out this great project, and creating a model to follow for similar projects in the municipality.

We again wish to thank The Soneva SLOW LIFE Trust for providing the funding for the project.

To read an update onthe project, CLICK HERE.

Conclusion of Gregorio Ferro-Cement Tank and Rainwater Catchment Project – BrazilConclusion of Gregorio Ferro-Cement Tank and Rainwater Catchment Project – Brazil
Conclusion of Gregorio Ferro-Cement Tank and Rainwater Catchment Project – BrazilConclusion of Gregorio Ferro-Cement Tank and Rainwater Catchment Project – Brazil
Conclusion of Gregorio Ferro-Cement Tank and Rainwater Catchment Project – BrazilConclusion of Gregorio Ferro-Cement Tank and Rainwater Catchment Project – Brazil
Conclusion of Gregorio Ferro-Cement Tank and Rainwater Catchment Project – BrazilConclusion of Gregorio Ferro-Cement Tank and Rainwater Catchment Project – Brazil
Conclusion of Gregorio Ferro-Cement Tank and Rainwater Catchment Project – BrazilConclusion of Gregorio Ferro-Cement Tank and Rainwater Catchment Project – Brazil
Conclusion of Gregorio Ferro-Cement Tank and Rainwater Catchment Project – BrazilConclusion of Gregorio Ferro-Cement Tank and Rainwater Catchment Project – Brazil

Conclusion of Women’s Center – Morocco

Conclusion of Women’s Center – MoroccoThis project has been completed under the direction of Peace Corps Volunteer Erin Atwell. To read about the beginning of the project, CLICK HERE.

This project was to participate in the construction of a women’s center by providing for the water and sanitation portions of the construction.

Erin reports:

Of the four objectives identified for the Talbrjte Community Center, three have been reached. First, the center was constructed. Construction took place between December 2009 and April 2010. While rain and other undesirable weather slowed the pace of construction, the work was still completed in April.

Construction included the completion of the kitchen sink and bathrooms, funded by Water Charity. The local association decided to add some elements to the center, including tile floors and extra access to water, which is currently taking place.

Conclusion of Women’s Center – MoroccoThe second objective of the center, obtaining equipment and supplies, has only been partially completed. The health room is fully equipped and functioning in a sustainable way. Supplies from the Ministry of Health were delivered to the center in order to prepare for the nurse and midwife’s visits. Unfortunately, due to bureaucratic red tape, the machines and supplies for the literacy and handicraft rooms have not been delivered. These supplies will come from the Ministry of Social Development as soon as they are sent from Rabat.

The third objective, to staff the center, is also complete. A local trained girl is ready to begin handicraft lessons upon the delivery of the equipment. A local educated girl is ready to begin literacy lessons upon the delivery of the literacy room equipment. The nurse and midwife have begun their bi-weekly visits to the health room of the women’s center.

The final objective of the center was completed on April 22, 2010. The Talbrjte Women’s Center had its inauguration in the presence of the women and girls of the community as well as men, local government officials, and Peace Corps staff.

While the community is both satisfied and feels that the goals have been reached, they will be even more satisfied once all of the equipment has been delivered.

Erin reports on the impact of the project on the community, based on discussions with va

World Water Day 2011

World Water Day 2011March 22nd, 2011 is the International World Water Day. In honor of this exciting celebration of the basic human right to clean drinking water we ask that you consider doing two things:

(1) Write or email your representatives and let them know that you support the Universal Human Right to Water.

(2) Donate to one of our projects, adopt a project from our Appropriate Projects initiative, or contribute directly to Water Charity to help us with outreach and publicity.

This is an important issue, and Water Charity is proud to be at the forefront of the water movement. Any awareness you can bring to your local community on this issue is valuable beyond measure. Let your friends and family know that:

     80% of all diseases are waterborne

     1 billion people worldwide do not have access to clean drinking water

     Fully half of all the worlds hospital beds are filled by someone suffering from a water-related illness

     Lack of clean drinking water kills more people per year than all forms of violence put together... including war.

Together we can put an end to this tragedy and stop all this needless human suffering. Remember that the human body is about 2/3rds water. We ARE water.

Parina Community Spring Project – Peru

Parina Community Spring Project – PeruThis project is for the covering of the community spring and the construction of a small catchment box to provide clean water to the people of Parina, Peru.

The project is being implemented under the direction of Kristen Gunther, graduate student at the Loma Linda University School of Public Health and Suma Marka, a Peruvian NGO operating out of Puno. To read the full details about the project, CLICK HERE.

The community of Parina, located in the rural southeast region of the Andes Mountains, adjacent to Lake Titicaca, currently struggles to access clean water sources. Parina is a small rural community situated approximately 12,500 feet above sea level and located outside the regional capital of Puno. Due to the rural location of Parina, community members lack access to clean water sources and struggle to obtain health-related services.

Parina primarily obtains its drinking water from unprotected springs contaminated by human and animal waste, and unmaintained wells built by the government. The primary spring is a location in which the community obtains drinking and cooking water and takes their animals to drink. While water from this spring is initially pure and potable, environmental contamination and lack of maintenance leads to unclean drinking water in the spring.

The structure of this spring is not ideal for preventing contamination of ground water and perpetuates water-related diseases. Elevated levels of E. coli and fecal coliforms have been consistently found in water from the spring. These indicator microbes show bacterial contamination likely to lead to gastrointestinal problems and diarrhea in Parina, especially among vulnerable children, pregnant women, and the elderly.

The project will start with the purchase of construction materials and equipment in the nearby city of Puno, and their transport by truck to Parina. Community members will provide certain materials that they currently have within the community, such as wood for the spring box frame and construction tools.

A local professional who has experience in constructing improved springs and wells will be hired to oversee the construction process of the catchment box. Community members in Parina will provide the labor.

To initiate construction the current spring will be excavated until an impermeable soil layer is reached. Gravel and stones will be placed above the soil layer to prevent erosion and further ensure a clean water source. A cement wall with an overflow tube at the top will be placed on the open wall of the spring to close the spring off. A second tube will be placed towards the bottom of the wall, approximately 50 centimeters from the ground, providing a connection to the catchment box. The water will flow from the protected spring into the catchment box where it will then be accessible to the community through a tap.

In addition, a cover will be constructed from local materials to ensure no contamination enters the spring from above, and to allow entry into the spring for cleaning and maintenance.

After the initial protection of the spring is completed, the catchment box will be constructed. It will contain an outlet tube approximately 50 centimeters from the ground with a tap to allow for water collection. An overflow tube will be placed 50 centimeters from the top of the catchment box to ensure that the catchment box does not overflow.

All tubes will have a screen on the end to ensure no debris will enter the spring or catchment box and all water leaving the catchment box will be free of particles.

A cover for the catchment box will also be constructed with a top allowing for easy access to clean and maintain it.

Finally, the spring and catchment box will be disinfected with a chlorine solution before use. Community members will be trained on maintenance to ensure a clean water source in the future and sustainability of all structures. Monthly water quality monitoring will continue in order to maintain water quality.

During the wet season, this project will benefit 49 people in 7 households, plus students at a small elementary school with 30 students. In the dry season, other water sources dry up and an additional 35 people in 7 households will use spring.

This project uses simple proven methods that can be replicated using locally available materials. Residents will be trained in construction and maintenance, thus ensuring sustainability.

In summary, this is a necessary project to prevent further contamination of the spring and provide clean drinking water to the Parina community. Its benefits will be seen in the measurable reduction of illness.

This project has now been fully funded through the generosity of The Soneva SLOW LIFE Trust as a part of their Clean Water Projects initiative.

We encourage others to continue to donate using the Donate button below, and we will notify Kristen of your donation. Additional funds will be used to fund other projects in Peru.

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

Conclusion of Solar Pump System Repair Project - Mali

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

The project was to rebuild the broken solar pump-to-tap system by replacing the damaged broken pipes and repairing the livestock-watering trough.

Zac reports:

I, along with the Diaramana Water Committee, have left the solar pump system in a functioning and more sustainable state. Now the broken parts on the livestock-watering trough and the broken transmission pipe have been replaced so that less water is being wasted through leakage.

All of the broken tap heads have been replaced with new tap heads with keys, and each key has been assigned to a certain respected member of the community within the vicinity of that tap head.

The Diaramana Water Committee and the traditional gerontocracy have agreed upon a new system for cost recovery and user payments, and according to my knowledge that new system will be implemented with the next year's taxes.

The Diaramana Water Committee has now developed the capacity for conducting repairs and maintenance of the solar pump system. This might seem too obvious a thing to bother writing about, but never before has the Water Committee been involved in any such repair project before - they have only sat back and watched as an NGO came in and built this water system with minimal involvement.

The community paid for all of the new tap heads, and for all of the welding, plumbing and transportation costs.

We wish to thank Zac for carrying out this great project, and again thank The Soneva SLOW LIFE Trust for providing the funding.

Conclusion of Solar Pump System Repair Project - MaliConclusion of Solar Pump System Repair Project - Mali

Conclusion of Naranjo Dry Bathroom Project – Peru

Conclusion of Naranjo Dry Bathroom Project – PeruThis project has been completed under the direction of Peace Corps Volunteer Matt Inbush. To read about the beginning of the project, CLICK HERE.

This project, as part of a larger Healthy Homes and Dry Bathrooms project, was to construct 60 “dry bathrooms”, one for each family in the community.

Matt reports:

The project's goals were to teach new skills (family hygiene, household water treatment, and illness prevention; vegetable gardening and general nutrition; waste management, composting, and recycling; and dry bathroom construction, use, and maintenance), develop management skills within the community, and reduce the village's rate of intestinal infections over time through the construction and correct use of sixty dry bathrooms.

The first goal was met; there was high community participation in meetings and trainings from start to finish, and the population showed significant knowledge retention through group "quizzes" given at each meeting.

The second goal also was met, in that the community (and particularly the five members of the Project Committee) demonstrated substantial organizational and project-planning skills, soliciting the local municipality's support when needed and resolving disputes between families, workers, and institutions at different stages throughout the project.

By the end of the project, they showed increased confidence and management capability both in working with the local municipality and with outside institutions like Peace Corps.

In regards to the final goal, the rate of reported intestinal infections must be monitored over several months (and ideally, several years) in order to make any conclusions. This will be carried out by both the Volunteer responsible for the project as well as his two replacement Volunteers in the district capital which the village belongs to.

In the end, fifty-two of the proposed sixty dry bathrooms were built, in addition to two "ventilated improved pit" latrines. Six families dropped out of the project along the way, for lack of interest or inability to provide the required materials and active participation.

The community as a whole, however, was extremely pleased with the results and many had begun using their units with 100% satisfaction. The remaining families were only missing final touches, such as the door, and planned to begin using their bathrooms as soon as possible.

Matt is continuing on as a 3rd-year volunteer at a new site in Pisco, about 4 hours south of Lima. We thank him for completing this great project, and wish him the best.

We again wish to thank The Soneva SLOW LIFE Trust for providing the funding for our participation in this project.

Conclusion of Naranjo Dry Bathroom Project – PeruConclusion of Naranjo Dry Bathroom Project – Peru
Conclusion of Naranjo Dry Bathroom Project – PeruConclusion of Naranjo Dry Bathroom Project – Peru

Wat Potaram Pre-School Cafeteria Project – Thailand

Wat Potaram Pre-School Cafeteria Project – ThailandFollowing on her successful Wat Potaram Pre-School Bathroom Renovation Project – Thailand, Peace Corps Volunteer Heather Chadwick is implementing a larger project at the same school.

Baan Nong Hai Village is a small, agricultural community located in Maha Sarakham Province in the Northeastern region of Thailand.

Wat Potaram Pre-School is one of two pre-school centers in the local district. Located on the grounds of a temple, the school serves 75 students, ages 3-5, with 5 teachers and one cook. Since Buddhist traditions play a very important role in the lives of the villagers, the temple and pre-school area are frequently used for community events as well.

Wat Potaram Pre-School Cafeteria Project – ThailandCurrently, there are no appropriate facilities in the school for the students to use at meal times. Instead, the students eat on the classroom floor, which is very crowded, not conducive to food distribution, and, most importantly, unsanitary.

The cafeteria will be attached to the pre-school, and will contain a food preparation and serving area, as well as tables and chairs. The Water Charity participation in the project will pay for the water-related aspects of the project. These include the fixtures as well as piping for supply, distribution, and wastewater removal in the new cafeteria.

The project is structured so that community families and workers will provide the labor. The many community stakeholders active in this project include local government staff, teachers, parents and students.

Wat Potaram Pre-School Cafeteria Project – ThailandThe teachers plan to use this opportunity to increase awareness about overall sanitation through hand washing lessons before and after meals and other health tutorials.

This project will directly benefit 81 people, and indirectly benefit several hundred more community members who use the facility for various community events.

This is a high-impact, immediately-effective project that will serve large numbers of villagers and students. It will reduce disease by creating hygienic conditions for years to come.

To indicate your desire for your contribution to be allocated toward this project, please click the Donate button below.

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

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Water Charity Honored

Water Charity Honored by Metropolitan Water District on World Water Day 2010

Water Charity was honored by the Metroplitan Water District and Friends of United Nations on World Water Day 2010 for our work in helping people obtain clean water worldwide.

WHO Guidelines for Drinking Water Quality

The Guidelines for Drinking-water Quality, third edition is now available as one integrated volume incorporating revisions reflected in the First and Second addenda.

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Quotations

Water is the only drink for a wise man.
Henry David Thoreau
US Transcendentalist author (1817 - 1862)