Going from 14,080 to 87,702 in 1,095—Our 3 Year Plan
Yes, it’s an ambitious plan. But with your help, we’re confident we can provide clean water to over 73,500 people in just 3 years.
How will we do it? Through building onto the solid foundation that we’ve developed over the last 4 years and embarking on an exponential expansion that we’ll make possible through increased efficiency and a new filter that’s both quicker and easier to install.
Want to know more? Here’s the plan.
Completing Phase 1: A Solid Foundation
In 2008, we began our multi-year project in Masaka, Rwanda. Partnering with World Relief Rwanda to work alongside of their existing church networks, our goal was to engage volunteers in the work of providing access to clean water for members of their community whose primary water source is the local Nyabarongo river. This amounts to at least half of the population within each of the surrounding communities. Within that segment of people, we also intentionally prioritize:
- Children in Child Development Care Groups
- People living with HIV/AIDS
- Child-headed households
- Pastors, church leaders, water project volunteers
- Opinion leaders [Community Health Workers, local leaders, etc.]
- Those with the ability to purchase a subsidized filter [Local Savings Groups and others in the community with resources]
Through that collaboration, 35 volunteers from local Rwandan churches formed the Rwandan Water Team. Year-round, these incredibly hard working individuals help with filter construction, care, and follow-up, and to date they have been instrumental in our ability to provide clean water to over 14,000 people in Masaka, Rwanda.
By June 2013, we will have completed our work in Masaka, having provided 27,441 people with clean water through the installation of 1,180 slow-sand filters and 15 rainwater harvesting systems [which can serve up to 100 households each]. And yet, clean water is only part of it. Prior to qualifying for a filter, all potential recipients receive health and hygiene training to learn how to care for their filter and live a healthy life. Then, we continue to support our filter recipients by collaborating with the Rwandan Water Team and Community Health Workers to provide the appropriate follow up, which guarantees each filter will work properly for the entirety of its lifespan.
Phase 2: Exponential Expansion
In phase 2 of our 3-year plan, we’ll continue implementing the approach above along the Nyabarongo River, while expanding into 4 more sectors in Rwanda: the Gahanga Sector in the Kicukiro District, and the Ntarama, Mwogo, and Juru Sectors in the Bugesera District.
The filters that we will use in these sectors are what we refer to as SAM 2’s and SAM 3’s. They are based on the concept of 2-stage filtering. The first stage is a sand filter that removes large particles, such as sediment, parasites, or worm cysts. Water then flows to the second stage, which consists of a 0.2 micron filter that is capable of removing virtually all remaining bacteria.
SAM 2’s are larger high-capacity models, which will be placed in schools and health clinics to respond to the higher usage there. With a cost of $2,000 per unit (which includes material costs, training, and on-going follow-up), SAM 2’s are able to provide clean water for approximately 400 people for 10 years. SAM 3’s then are smaller versions of this same model that will be placed in households for a single family’s use. Each of these filters costs approximately $100 for materials, training, and follow-up.
In addition to these units, we will continue to take advantage of the extended rainy season in Rwanda by installing rainwater harvesting systems in these new regions, as well.
Want to see how this will all play out? Here’s a look at our anticipated timeline and number of people/households who will be served through this expansion:
June 2012 – September 2013
July 2013 – June 2014
March 2014 – March 2015
October 2014 – September 2015
In total, we will install 40 rainwater cisterns, 31 SAM 2 filters, and 7,194 SAM 3 filters.
Why Are We Using New Filters?
The main reason is simply so we can provide more people with access to clean water. A major benefit to these filters are that they are quicker to construct, as they require significantly less sand than our original slow-sand filters. This means our volunteers can build and install them at a more rapid rate, and more people are able to have access to clean water in a shorter amount of time. Because let’s face it—when children are dying from water-related diseases every 20 seconds—every second counts.
How Can You Help?
To achieve these ambitious results, we’re going to need your help. Providing access to clean water for 87,000 people is not without cost. So over the next 3 years, we’ll be looking to raise 1.2 million dollars. Would you be able to help get us one person closer to our goal? For only $20, you could provide clean water to 1 person in our expanded focus for up to 10 years.Give Now Start a Fundraiser