Build Bridges for Health, Education & Hope - Nepal

Aug 26, 2013

STEM 4th Graders WireBridge Restored

Some village students at the crossing
Some village students at the crossing

In July a repair team from VillageTech Solutions travelled in the middle of the monsoon to a village in Nawalparasi, Nepal to repair a WireBridge built eight years ago. A photographer friend went along and captured moments of this difficult journey (3 days to cover what would be less that one day in the dry season). This restoration trip was inspired by a Colorado STEM magnet school's 4th grade class. They had studied the construction of WireBridges (TarPul) in a module provided by Boston's Museum of Science in their Engineering is Elementary series. The students thought so highly of these bridges that they organized their own fundraiser, which provided the seed capital for this repair trip.

Approximately 60 students use this WireBridge to reach their school, but of course the villagers benefit as well, being able to get to their fields across the river safely. VTS provided drawing materials, which the students used to illustrate a view of their world--the homes, school, river--and TarPul.

The cost to build and to maintain a bridge serving the entire community is about the same as we pay for a personal vehicle: $22,000 to 25,000 to build, about $ 3,000 for a major overhaul, and then about $600/year to maintain. Until the local government is willing and able to provide these maintenance funds, the villagers will depend upon us to keep the wheels turning. VTS is working with local social entrepreneurs to persuade the government to take responsibility for maintenance so that our efforts can be on construction of bridges to serve isolated communities.

VTS repair crew with tools and lunch under shelter
VTS repair crew with tools and lunch under shelter
Prem re-tensions the WireBridge
Prem re-tensions the WireBridge's wires
Village mom
Village mom's oversee repair work
Going to school
Going to school
Thanks to STEM Magnet school kids
Thanks to STEM Magnet school kids

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Project Leader

David Sowerwine

Managing Director
Menlo Park, California United States

Where is this project located?

Map of Build Bridges for Health, Education & Hope - Nepal