The People’s Consultants in collaboration with Aguadel Pueblo (www.aguadelpueblo.org), the Rotary Club of Lake Atitlan (https://rotaryatitlan.org/), and Wellkind (https://www.wellkind.org/guatemala) submitted a “Program of Scale” proposal to Rotary International (RI). RI awards one Program of Scale grant annually totaling $2,000,000 over five years.
The grant is to provide sustainable potable water supply and sanitation for 20 communities and 20,000 beneficiaries for the rest of their lives! Wellkind will add reforestation to promote sustainability. The team will build on our successful experience over the past decade.
Even more importantly we will address the underlying root cause - poverty and the maldistribution of wealth and economic opportunities. Indeed, in one of our most recent projects (Sanik- Ya and Chitulul), the community completed their first access road, introduced electricity, and began the petition for their first schools. The leaders of the village water committee attributed their success to the lesson learn and the confidence gained in following our methodology in their WASH project
Our methodology ensures that the 20 communities will lead all phases of project implementation. We will also help the communities and their municipal authorities develop an equitable tariff system. The only way to operate and maintain a WASH project is for the community to provide all of the finances and technical expertise.
Another outcome is the increased health in the beneficiaries, the increased school attendance and the decrease in time carrying water. As an aside, the average distance that an individual has to walk to obtain water before an AdP project is almost one mile! The average household spends three hours in carrying water before the project is complete.
We prioritize sanitation for two reasons. 1. Most of the communities with which we have worked, feel the need for improved water is more urgent than improved sanitation. 2. The WHO and other published sources have found that to obtain health improvements, sanitation is even more cost-effective than potable water. We will follow the methodology described in Chipman, C., V. Strait and B Clemens, 2014 “Who Cares About the Community? Agua del Pueblo as a case study for water-related non-profit work”: American Journal of Social Issues and Humanities 4(6): 319-334.