We recently recieved a message of thanks from Yeshey Dorji of the Rotary Club of Thimphu
Our planet earth is sometimes called the Blue Planet – a name derived from the color and abundance of water.
All life forms on earth are sustained by water; it is a life giver, it purifies and is a great source of strength, but it can also cause great destruction.
The most important use of water is for drinking purpose.
Water is central to healthy growth of children and adults alike.
While Bhutan has the highest per capita availability of water in the region, access to clean and safe drinking water is a huge challenge.
The problem of plenty has been caused mainly because of our geography.
While settlements and farmlands are on hilltops, most waters are in the ravines at the bottom of the valleys.
Thus people end up consuming unsafe water, but mostly muddy.
Disaster Aid Australia’s (DAA) recent partnership with the Rotary Club of Thimphu to augment its efforts to deliver safe and filtered water to schoolchildren in rural Bhutan is a welcome intervention.
Five Skyhydrants have already been installed in 5 schools spread across the country.
It is our hope that DAA will continue to contribute towards the RC Thimphu’s ongoing endeavors to safeguard the health of school children in rural Bhutan.
The Rotary Club of Thimphu wishes to thank Rotarian K. K. Looi of Malaysia for his original introduction and Disaster Aid Australia.
Thanks is also being offered to Mr. Andrew Gunn and Mr. Phillip Gribble, the DAA Members who travelled difficult terrain to install these systems.
Disaster Aid Malaysia have been busy working at improving the water supply to the Ban Chaikuan Police Border School.
This 'Safe Water for Every Child' project involved replacing existing non functional equipment with a compact Skyhydrant GEM unit.
The project also involved re-purposing their clean water dispenser, tank and pump to work with the new Skyhydrant.
To find out more about Disaster Aid Malaysia check out their facebook page.
Australian Disaster Aid Response Team members Helene Bo Morse, Peter Newton, and Di Holland have been busy working in Chiapas over the past month.
Two months after the earthquake many homes still looked like this photograph.
Disaster Aid have been helping local people build back better by providing materials including steel reinforcing to make new houses much more resistant to earthquakes.
36 housholds were identified in Nuevo Palestina, Jiquipilas and Rizo De Oro, Cintalada for repair.
A typical material list per household was:
At just over $1,000 per household.
A triple SkyHydrant unit at the Chiapas Hospital has been installed
After testing by Mexican Authorities the water has been approved as suitable for consumption.
This will result in considerable savings to the local hospital which has previously had to rely on daily purchases of bottled water.
The Ignacio Zaragoza Primary School has been re-opened following repairs to damaged classrooms.
Disaster Aid Australia Response Team members Andrew Gunn and Phillip Gribble are currently in Bhutan and Nepal.
They are suppling and installing 4 SkyHydrants in Bhutan and 2 in Nepal.
Most schools in Bhutan and Nepal have unsafe drinking water which can be contaminated with dirt in the rainy season and bacteria such as E Coli, Typhus, and other diseases which cause respiratory illness’ and blindness.
Student absenteeism averages around 5% to 10% due waterborne illness.
As education is one of the best ways these generations will improve their own lives and help to continue building these nations.
Keeping these kids healthy and at school through the provision of safe water to drink and cook with is our challenge.
In selecting the sites DAA liaised with the Bhutan Education and Health Departments and also received a request from the King of Bhutan's Welfare Office.
Thanks to our in country contacts Mr Yeshey Hoorpilla of the Rotary Club of Thimpu, and the Bhutan Toilet Organisation (BTO) we have received great local support.
These children were delighted to try the clean water at our first installation at their school in Bongo a small village with a population of around 300.