Educational Workshop in El Fraile
Dear GlobalGiving Supporters,
We have some big news this update. After more than 10 months of hard work and waiting, we were officially approved to implement a major water project with the Gonzalo Río Arronte Foundation. This three year project will allow us to work in 30 new rural communities – building literally hundreds of rainwater harvesting systems, water filters, and even several dozen composting toilets as well as implementing workshops and technical trainings. We are just about to sign the official contract and get phase one off the ground.
During phase one, we will be working closely with our grassroots collaborators – United Communities for Live and Water (CUVAPAS for their acronym in Spanish), Pozo Ademado Community Services (SECOPA), and the San Cayetano Community Center – to hold community meetings, workshops, technical capacity trainings, and ultimately build the first 72 large-scale rainwater harvesting systems. This phase will run through February, 2021, and allow us to work with 12 communities and dozens of families – all greatly impacted by severe water quality and/or scarcity issues.
While the Gonzalo Río Arronte Foundation project will greatly define our work moving forward, we have been hard at work in local communities in the meantime. Our methods have changed greatly due to the current global pandemic. All of our community meetings and educational events are now held outside as much as possible, with safe distancing and masks a must. We have also started asking community groups to send representatives to keep numbers of participants lower than we would normally look to have.
In July, we finished a major project building a 20,000-liter capacity rainwater harvesting system in the elementary school of El Salitrillo. We worked closely with a group of mothers, and this project was also the first opportunity to debut our new 7-module educational program we have been developing for more than a year.
Currently, we have two major projects underway. The first is to finish building 20 rainwater harvesting systems in small villages surrounding the community of Agustín González, which has the highest levels of fluoride contamination in all of the municipality of San Miguel de Allende – greatly impacting the health of the youth in the region. This project was supported by the municipal government of San Miguel de Allende and UBSA – a local business that provided the majority of the funding for materials.
We also have a big project well underway in the community of El Fraile. During the month of July, we raised funds from individual donors, including all of our recurring supporters here on GlobalGiving, to specifically help support this project. The community of El Fraile is located on the outskirts of San Miguel de Allende and in the middle of massive agricultural production. Because of this water-intensive production, the water-table below the community has been dropping rapidly – so much so that a little over a year ago the well went completely dry and actually collapsed in on itself. Since then, the community has been without regular water access. Thanks to all of you, we raised enough support to build 24 large-scale rainwater harvesting systems with the community! This is a massive success.
We are currently finishing the educational program with the participating families in El Fraile, and we are about to get construction of the 24 rainwater harvesting systems underway. The community members themselves will be providing all of the labor and even the materials to build the bases and gutter systems for all of the systems; this allows us to extend the impact to as many families as possible.
Thanks to all of our on-going supporters from GlobalGiving for keeping these projects thriving. During these difficult times, water is only becoming more and more important. Thank you again.
Rainwater Harvesting System in El Salitrillo
Fixing a Rainwater System at a Local School
Caminos Staff Inspects a Finished Rainwater System
Delivering Water Filters to an Elementary School