We are in the beginning phases of our project in La Calle Real, Nicaragua. James Stark, Vice President of the Bright Water Foundation made a 3 day visit to La Calle Real in conjunction with the Worldwide Child Relief Foundation (WCRF) founded by Hal and Denise Young. The purpose of the trip was to meet with local residents, assess their water needs and the efficacy of a partnership with Bright Water Foundation. He trained a couple adults and a few youths on the proper method of collecting, preserving, preparing and testing water samples. After the morning instruction, the participants visited various residents to collect water samples. The following day, the results of the sample for the prior day were interpreted and recorded. In total, 14 residences were visited and the local river. At the residences, water samples were taken from the well, the in-house filtration system (if present), and water storage vessels. Only 3 of the 14 residential water sources tested were not contaminated with E. Coli. On the last work day, the participants returned to each of the residences to inform the owners of the results for their water source and if necessary to recommend and train on a proper sanitization method for their situation (pasteurization and/or chlorination). He made a trip was made to the local supermarket in the closest major town, León, to determine what household disinfectants were locally available for purchase at a reasonable cost.
The residents of La Calle Real can certainly benefit from Bright Water Foundation’s program. Plans are in progress for returning to La Calle Real to conduct a complete training program. It was readily apparent that the principle of the local school has a lot of influence in the community and she is willing to act as a central contact for on-going education effort. We saw that filtration systems installed by Samaritan’s Purse International Relief were effective when used and maintained properly.