Friday, April 23, 2010

We're almost there!

We just had another SLAB board presentation, which went really well, and we are all getting excited for our departure to Peru.  A LOT has changed since our last SLAB presentation. PlusPetrol and the new government of the community have decided to drill a bigger well for the municipality, so the entire community will have access to enough water. This changes up our project scope pretty drastically, but our help is still needed. We are going to focus on water conservation and ensuring the water the school receives from the city will be potable.

As part of our focus on water conservation, we are going to install water-saving fixtures, including faucets, shower heads, and toilets. Currently they have no shower heads, and the principal would like for the students to be able to take showers once a week. Their toilets will be replaced with dual-flush systems, and a child-sized toilet will also be installed in each bathroom. Due to the high number of small children that attend the school, this one of the principal's initial requests that we thought wouldn't be possible with our old scope. With the absence of the well and distribution system from our scope, we now have the funds to provide the toilets. It's nice to know that the principal will be getting exactly what she wanted. In addition to the installation of fixtures, we are also installing an automated drip irrigation system so that their gardens can be watered more efficiently. We will then teach the community, both the children and adults, the importance of proper sanitation and water conservation.

We also hope to have the water tested prior to our arrival so that we can implement a filtration system if needed. We plan to shock and clean the current distribution system and storage tanks, which are currently very dirty, so they don't contaminate the water further.

To prepare for our project, we received plumbing training yesterday at Pickle Research Center, which was an awesome hands-on learning experience, and now we're all pros at toilet installation. We still have a few more tasks to complete before we're ready to travel, but we can definitely feel it getting close!

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