I am Sr Maria Tran Thi Kim Mai, Dominican Sisters of Our Lady of Rosary Lang Son. I am now in charge of Canal D community, Can Tho.
On behalf of all the people, I thank you so much for your support. Thanks to your help, all of our boarding school pupils Thanh Thang and the people around the parish now have clean water to use daily.
Thanks a lot for your generosity that helps us improve our quality of life. We are so happy about that. We do experience God’s love through your helping hand.
May God bless you all good health, joy and peace, so that you may always be the extending hand of our loving God to all the people.
Sr Maria Tran Thi Kim Mai
Dear MSC Mission Office and benefactors,
We, Fr Anthony Nguyen Van Thanh and Mr Tran Manh Cuong, Thanh Da parish, received from MSC Mission Office.
We have installed the purifying system already, and now all the people here are very happy to have clean water. On behalf of the people, thank you very much for your support.
May God bless you all and repay your goodness!
Anthony Nguyen Van Thanh
Parish priest of Thanh Da
Sr Christine Martin writes from Limpopo in South Africa:
South Africa is in severe drought and water shortage is suffered throughout many households. Towns are on water restrictions but rural villages are having to cart in water and pay per drum load and many have needed our assistance to survive.
The crèche water infrastructure was upgraded to try to get a few buckets a day from the borehole. Tanks and guttering have been erected across several orphaned homes together with the building of pit toilets. A new borehole has been drilled on the mission which supports the clinic, three residences, the OVC project and vegie gardens.
The project provided for various water tank and sanitation projects at orphan homes, The HIV/Aids Diocesan Response Centre, Bakhita home of safety for primary school girls, the mission site and OVC houses.
This included fencing to stop animals grazing on the property and destroying vegetable gardens; pit toilets for families; maintenance, repair of ablution block at Bakhita and toilets at the Diocesan Centre; tanks, stands and guttering at all places; a borehole at the mission and more water pipes and connections for a local village crèche.
Land was purchased and cleared by OVC families on three new sites, some dug holes for fencing, others carried water for mixing cement and bricks for tank stands. Leveling ground and digging pit for toilet was hard work.
Pit toilets/plumbing items:
At Bakhita, residential for young girls situated at Dwars River, the showers and toilets needed repairing. A new borehole was drilled down 130 metres instead of the usual 80 as there has been no water for several months. Out in the villages six orphan households have had pit toilets constructed.
New fences were erected at three OVC sites to protect their gardens but with the drought nothing much has come to fruition. It has however, enhanced personal security and we have had our building lads fill gaps in walls and repair areas where potential thieves were accessing properties, particularly where only women and children were residing.
Tanks and Guttering:
We have put tanks up at the Diocesan Centre, Bakhita and the mission volunteers’ house and OVC houses. All have had tank stands and guttering to help with the collection of rain water.
Sadly the drought hasn’t yet broken so there is little benefit as yet from this effort. A grave lesson was learnt in this aspect of the project. Gale force winds tore through the orphan compound up on the hill at Rapitsi and one of the tanks blew off its stand as it was empty and not secured.
We now know to buy tent pegs and wire to weigh them down. We also changed the size of some of the tanks, keeping smaller ones for households and larger ones for groups and shared community centres. It became evident that the greater capacity for storage was a better option.
It has indeed been a God send to assist so many suffering orphaned and unemployed families with the water project funding. The harsh reality of the drought has made life even more difficult and many are struggling to survive. Having access to water is helping many to keep healthier as the river water, if not totally dried up, is compromised with livestock, washing of vehicles and clothing and being used as public latrines. I even saw a circus tent … used for funerals … being washed down at the water hole. To be able to provide a healthier option through the clean water project is making a positive difference to many of the Orphans and Vulnerable Children that we have in our ministry.
Our Project Officer in the Philippines writes:
I proceeded to Jipapad, Eastern Samar to have an inspection to a water system project proposal. To help you recall, in our last Board Meeting, the project proposal for water system of the community was postponed because there were items needed to clarify in the project.
It was a long trip going to the community. It took me 6 hours in order to reach the place. The entire region was mountainous but the road was good. Though communication signal was extremely bad, I managed to reach the community almost midnight.
The next day, Fr. Sim and I were able to go around the community and check the proposed location of the project. The community is surrounded by 2 rivers. It was a very small and old town with lots of people. The main livelihood is farming. The water supply of the community was greatly bad. They only rely on the river supply of water for domestic use which is brownish in color (as shown in the photo). There are some private own jetmatic pump and deep well – but only limited – who sell water for 5-10 pesos per container. For those who cannot afford, they opt to sterilize the water from the river. According to Fr. Sim, there were already cases of water contamination in the community and they could not ignore it. Yearly, they also experience water shortage especially in summer time. By that time, they could not pump the water from the deep well and river water is the only resort. I can really see the need of the water system in the community. It would be a great help for the people in the place.
Another concern that we’ve discussed during the visit was the construction of the water station in the community. In our last meeting, the construction of the water station was scrutinized. The main concern of the board was “to where the income would go” when its operation starts. So, the board recommended that the community/ parish should create a team or tap an organization from the community to lead the operation of the water station. However, it was corrected by Fr. Sim that the parish never intends to make a business out of the water system project. The project aims to help the people mitigate their water supply problem. And since they had history of water contamination, they are proposing filter machine to avoid health related concerns in the future. In addition, the parish needs to collect certain minimal amount from the people (according to their consumption) for the maintenance of the project. He would also create a team who will do the regular inspection and monitoring of the water system – as recommendation by the board.
The community is really hopeful about the positive outcome of the project. They are really praying for the opportunity to have safe and potable water in their community.
Our Project Officer in the Philippines writes with this update:
We visited one of the approved projects in Tacloban City. Together with Fr. Richie and some volunteer partners, we met the project proponents of the water system project. We discussed the development of the project in the community. There were some aspects that needed to clarify about the project and they were raised during the meeting.
1. The site/ area where the project would be constructed – There will be 3 sites within the community where the project will be constructed. During the visit, Fr. Richie instructed the project manager to secure the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) from the community and the owner of the land where the water system will be put up to avoid problems later on. By this, the ownership of the water system will already be determined as the project is being implemented.
2. Water System Construction Team – A group of water system experts from France will come over to lead the construction of the water system. They are part of the Kaloob Foundation who volunteered to help the community for the water system project.
3. Project mapping/ sketch – A map of the water system will be completed before the construction starts. It will help verify if the water system is strong enough to be established in the community. The mapping will be made as soon as the water system team arrives in the community.
The water system project is expected to be completed in April. It will be timely for the community to secure enough water supply during summer time.
Overall, the visit was fruitful and meaningful. They also showed to us their previous and ongoing projects that they implemented for the community (e.g. farming, bakery, housing, comfort rooms and children's playground). We will come again in the area to visit and monitor the project during its implementation.
That’s all for the project. Thank you and God bless.
Sr Rita Grunke is back in Australia at the moment and has brought a request for five new bore wells in South Sudan. She is requesting the Mission Office donors to support three of these and will be asking a Brisbane Parish for funding of the other two. The company that does the wells will only travel from Juba if there are five wells to be drilled.
Sr Grunke writes:
Two Community Settlements are within Mapuordit Parish; the third is a Satellite school which we support with basic school supplies but are without water.
The provision of water points with hands pumps for three communities whose requests have been on the waiting list for over 12 months. Each location is at least three Km from their nearest water point. Panajak has a very active female leader who will develop a garden when the water point becomes a reality. Barbol school children are disadvantaged in that water is not available on school site. On hot days teaching hours are shortened due to lack of water. The women at Panabuna have pleaded for more than twelve months for water closer to home.
The local communities are contributing land for the water points; clearing paths to access the borehole; organising fruit tree seedlings for planting when water becomes available; each community will be responsible for future upkeep and maintenance of boreholes
I am requesting funds for 5 boreholes, because the Juba-based company will go the distance for a minimum of five work sites. Their product is of excellent quality; the depth of drilling allows for a future submersible pump. From MSC Mission Office I am requesting three water points for 2017 and a similar request is with a Brisbane parish for two water points for 2017.
Deep gratitude from all beneficiaries for all you are and have been to communities with no fresh, clean water except at the distance of three Km.
Sr. Rita Grunke
Date: 20th December, 2016
A quotation for the three bore wells has been received at $AU42,000.
Can You Help?
Please donate and
select Overseas Aid Projects (Tax-deduction)
for Clean Water and
write "Sr Rita South Sudan" in the comments field.
Brother MANGA ATEMENGUE Jean Juvénal writes from the MSC POST-NOVITIATE to ask for funds for repairs to the water pump that provides water to the Novitiate and surrounding community.
The cause can take days to repair.
Technicians believe this is related to the bad electricity that is provided to us and its instability. They also believe that our facilities are overburdened by the demand for water coming from our community and the neighbouring populations who draw water from these installations since two years thanks to the facilities financed by you and the Mission Office.
They therefore propose to install a new pump which will serve as a relay not only to have water in case of power failure, but to help rest from time to time the current installations.
The project will help the Community of the MSC Post-Novitiate in Yaoundé-Nkolbisson/CAMEROON and the all the neighbourhood: young people and their families."
A quotation for the work and equipment has been received at $AU8,500.
Can You Help?
Please donate and select Overseas Aid Projects (Tax-deduction) for Clean Water and write "Cameroon Post Novitiate" in the comments field.
Fr Caspar Towaninara msc writes from East New Britain about four water tanks just installed:
The first 4 Tuffa Tanks were delivered to the first Four Groups. Group Leaders, who are all males were also somehow, caught with their pants either half-way up or down. It was a first of its kind to them and their Groups beyond their simple comprehension capacities and preparedness. I had to make sure they had everything right. Their contribution included these purchased items: I. Cement (for mixture with stones and sand) for Tank Stands, 2. Descent Iron Roofing, 3. Gutters, 4. Down Pipes, 5. Tap Connections and 6. Taps. With the current rainy season the Four Groups being served so far enjoy drinking clean water of life from the Tuffa Tanks (Cf. Groups Profile and Images).
Before delivery of the next 4 Tuffa Tanks I have made sure that the Groups are fully ready: Tank Stands, Iron Roofing, Gutters, Down Pipes, Tap Connections, Taps and even Locks to prevent unnecessary water wastage esp. by kids. Hence, the Groups Vunakua, Vunaluba, Navua and Vunakavananga are now ever ready and much better organized than the first Four. All members are all aware that the Tanks are meant precisely for drinking only as the members are so many. They are being educated to continue looking elsewhere for other water uses, like laundry and taking a shower...
This is a facebook post from one of the recipients:
"Today is special cos we taken delivery of a 9000 litre tank to provide the essence of life "WATER".
Special thanks and gratitude to Fr. Caspar ToWaninara,msc, MSC Sydney & Hardware Haus, Kokopo(manager). I can't help but wonder if the government of the day, thru our elected leaders (local MPs) will ever prioritize basic needs, services and development for our rural majority. I applaud and salute the agency (Catholic MSC) involved in this Water project. Thumbs up!...Feeling blessed..."
Fr Caspar has requested another four water tanks.
Can You Help?
Please donate and select Overseas Aid Projects (Tax-deduction) for Clean Water and write "Lakeside East New Britain" in the comments field.
Here is a short acquittal report of the water tower at Peter Torot.
Our welder/metalworker Mr. Lodefikus with 2 helpers were doing the job of constructing the water tower, setting the basement, building up a scaffold, lift up the construction of the water tower, welding the elements together, painting the tower and put up the water tank.
Our plumber Mr. Joanis installed the water pump and made the water pipe connections between the water tank and the buildings.
Three different buildings are connected to the water tower - two dormitories and the mess hall with the kitchen.