Many families in our area suffer from lack of access to clean water and poor sanitation. As a result, many people contract waterborne diseases which may be fatal if left untreated. In partnership with The Community Councils of Urban and Rural Development (COCODES), the Municipality of Itzapa, and Las Niñas Lideran we conducted a needs assessment for the local village of Corrales.
Pilot Project: After our initial needs assessment we completed a pilot project distributing bio-sand filters (and bicimáquinas) to homes in Aldea los Corrales. We have been assessing project successes and failures and will use the knowledge gained to adapt our methods accordingly as we expand the project toward the greater population.
Further Needs Assessments: With support from COCODES, the Municipality of Itzapa, and the Itzapa Municipal Alliance and are currently conducting needs assessments and analyzing local population and water-use data for other Aldeas in our geographic region.
Approach: We are constructing bio-sand filters that remove pathogens and turbidity from water. We have partnered with Las Niñas Lideran and the Community Champions of Itzapa (both groups of young women) who are responsible for educating local families about the principles of WASH and the correct use of our bio-sand filters.
Growth: We hope to develop the infrastructure required in order to operate successfully in the entire municipal region. This will include implementing monitoring programs, fostering relationships with local leaders and families, and optimizing our production of bio-sand filters.
Outreach: We believe that the project will need to be specifically adapted to the needs and culture of each community we work with. In the coming years we hope to hire a Community Outreach Specialist to act as our community liaison to identify the needs of each community and promote community wellness.
Partnerships: We realize we’ve taken on an enormous task and can’t possibly hope to succeed without creating further partnerships with NGOs, Universities, and local governments. By doing this we hope to gain access to more resources that will allow us to achieve our vision.