Posted by: Wasrag | August 19, 2013

Clean, sustainable water for 4000 families in Lubang

Bringing clean water to a community is always a significant event. When that change is brought about using clean, renewable energy, even better! This is what happened in a recent project in the Pulili, Lubang and Cabra Islands in the Mindoro region of the Philippines (District 9800).  The communities are located in the Pacific’s fragile “Coral Sea of Triangles”, noted for the huge number of corals and arid land.

Water shortage is a fact of life here, especially in the summer when many of the usual water sources dry up.  Even during the wet season many residents spend a significant portion of their day collecting water for drinking, cooking, crop/livestock propagation and other domestic purposes.

Arnolfo “Arno” Sigman is typical.  He and his son walk upwards of 2 km daily to collect water and carry it back to their homes.  In other households women often spend up to three hours every day trudging back and forth to get water.

Rotary Australia World Community Service (RAWCS) Chair for Water and Sanitation (Ruth Carlos-Martinez) joined forces with the RCs of Melbourne and Lubang and consulted with SIBAT a firm of renewable energy engineers. They assessed the terrain and came up with a distribution system driven by solar power and wind turbines to provide water access for 23 housing clusters on both islands.

Major project activities included design and installation of the power source, development of a deep dug well and installtion of a complete water distribution and storage system, including a submersible pump, water tower tanks, tranmission and distribution pipelines, robust tap stand collection areas and bio sand water filtration systems to ensure the water is safe to drink.

A critical factor in the project was sustainability.  A community group was formed by SIBAT to ensure adequate training for all factors, including a disaster and tsunami watch. Minimal tariffs are collected for the water to ensure funds are available to pay the PO (People’s Organization) and funds are set aside for future maintenance.

With a total cost of $57,000 the project was completed in January 2013.  Cluster tap stands now provide clean water across the villages of Lubang and Cabra Islands, greatly reducing the time Arno and the villagers spend collecting water.

In a subsequent visit to Lubang by the RC of Melbourne with Ruth Carlos-Martinez, the community expressed it most sincere appreciation to the Rotary Foundation, the RCs of Melbourne, Brighton Beach, Brighton North and Lubang as well as the local government for providing them with safe, clean water.

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Responses

  1. Congratulations to Wasrag,
    You are all involved in this project is extraordinary noble, provide the main source of life for 4000 families in Lubang .

  2. very interesting article. very informative which can be useful to us. Keep posting useful stuff


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