3 Day Hydraid BioSand Water Filter Training

Three Day Hydraid BioSand Water Filter Training At Rach Suc 

We at  Bridges of Saint Mark are sponsoring a 3 day training session scheduled for March 7th, 8th, and 9th at the Rach Suc Mission Church in Can Tho, Vietnam. This 3 day event will instruct a team of 15 to 20 students on the proper implementation and maintenance of BioSand Water Filters in the hopes that those who are trained will be inspired to champion the cause – helping to ensure that the poorest of the poor in their region will have access to healthy clean water.

By the summer of 2014, we successfully delivered 131 Hydraid Biosand Water Filters to the Rach Suc Mission Church in Can Tho and while we are thankful for the opportunity to respond to the need to help provide clean water for the poor in their region, we realize that our work is far from complete. Despite the fact that one of our representatives, Louis Lugo and a few volunteers worked there in 2014 to implement up to 30 filters and instructing eager listeners on their proper installation and maintenance, we found that we still need “Boots on the Ground” to do a better job of tending to the filters already installed and help other poor families who can’t afford safe drinking water.

To continue our efforts in helping the Rach Suc Mission Church provide clean water in their region, our challenge is to raise awareness of the importance of clean water to the health of their community. Because of the many needs and the level of poverty in that area, the ministers at Rach Suc are forced to concentrate on, what seems to be, more pressing – more immediate needs, such as providing rice or medicines for the poor. Understandably, considering the amount of work that takes place at the Rach Suc Mission Church just to meet basic needs, water filtration is somewhat lower on the list of important things contend with. The more urgent need seems to be what is happening right in front of them right now; and that is tending to the constant influx of people in their current condition.

Knowing our limitations, we have been arduously looking for a business, university or organization in that area to help us in our endeavor to provide proper training and ongoing instruction in water filtration and good health practices. Finally, with the help of CAWST, we were introduced to a work in Phnom Penh, Cambodia – CWS – Church World Service.

CWS works in partnership with communities and families in six Southeast Asian countries – Cambodia, Indonesia, Myanmar, Thailand, Timor-Leste and Vietnam – to help them improve their lives. They do this by enhancing access to information, education and hands-on training for development and disaster preparedness. Church World Service (CWS) is a faith-based organization working to help communities around the world transform through just and sustainable responses to hunger, poverty, displacement and disaster.” The “work in Cambodia began in 1979 with emergency food and medical relief, and continues today as a comprehensive, integrated rural development program for some of the country’s poorest rural communities and families. Rural development initiatives are done in partnership with communities and their leaders as well as Bread for the World and the Finnish Evangelical Lutheran Mission as well as several Cambodian government ministries and departments.” “Additionally, because of the need for access to safe water, CWS staffs a WASH Training Center in partnership with CAWST, the Center for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology.  Center staff work throughout Cambodia to support governmental and non-governmental partners as they provide more Cambodians with access to safe water.”

 After a plethora of emails, Skype meetings, planning and prayer, we are excited to announce a three day training at Rach Suc. “This workshop offers instruction and hands-on experience to people involved in installing and implementing the filter projects. The hands-on experience includes construction of the filter, lids and preparation of the filtration sand. Participants will gain a clear understanding of the rationale behind the filter design, how to install it, how to educate users about the correct use and maintenance of the filter, and how to monitor the project. The workshop also includes training on the impact of safe water, the multi-barrier approach to safe water and safe storage.”

Many Thanks to our Cambodian friends from CWS – Church World Service; especially Sim Saora for his professionalism and availability.

Please continue praying for our friends at the Rach Suc Mission Church in Can Tho, Vietnam who work so hard for the poor in their community.           

                                                                                                                 Randall Tipple

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