Wednesday, October 16, 2013

"Clean water, the essence of life and a birthright for everyone, must become available to all people now." -- Jean-Michel Cousteau

I have written before about the biosand filter project on which we are currently working.  A Rotary Club from the U.K. has contracted us to build 50 biosand filters, paint them white, put the logo of the Rotary Club on each filter and deliver them the 100 kilometers west of us to the town of Nansio on Ukarewe Island.  Once there, Shaban will spend a week with a group of volunteers from the U.K. installing and teaching about the care and maintenance of the biosand filters.  This is the biggest contract we have ever had.  The previous was for thirty filters for some Catholic orphanages about 120 kilometers north of us purchased by Father Chaka.  We are paying for the transportation of the filters as our part of the project just because we want to be involved.  The biosand filters are for the schools in Nansio, so the students can have clean, safe drinking water.  Each filter will provide enough water for 30 students or more and so between 1,500 and 2,000 school children will have water free of the bacteria and parasites that make so many sick here.  In the schools where we have previously placed filters, the principals have all reported attendance increases of 30 to 40% because the kids aren't out sick.  The better the attendance, the better the education, so when we put them in schools, everyone wins.  The British group will be here in mid-November, so we have less than a month to finish, but we are only a few days away from having everything ready.  You can see a local artist painting a logo on one of the filters at the right, and if you click on that picture, it will take you to website with seven more pictures showing what the filters look like when finished and the rest of the team of artists doing the work.  We are so happy to be a part of this.  There will be articles with pictures in the local newspapers.  When Jerry Buckingham, of Cherokee Village, Arkansas, started us on aspect of our mission back in 2006, we had no idea how big it was going to become.  Without his teaching, overseeing the building of the molds, and convincing us of how good they were, we might never have done this.  Our family has been getting its drinking water from one of the first filters Jerry built almost eight years ago, and it is still working just as well as it did the first day.  Thank you, Jerry.  One person can make a huge difference in this world.

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