As Dr. Robinson reported, many people are coming for clean water in Grande Saline. They are coming by foot, on bikes, motorcycles and horses. It is so wonderful to see the people in the community taking the clean water. Our next goal is to provide the equipment to power the system with solar power. Thank you for all of your help, and please continue to support the people of Grande Saline and this project.
Dr. Robinson, our partner in Haiti, sent a message this morning and asked me to share it with the entire Health for Haiti team.
“Good morning! Last night I received a call from 2 of the operators, Nadège and Duckens, because I talk to them everyday about the running of the water filtration system. I was happy and can’t stay without sharing my joy with you. The operators pumped water two times yesterday and around 2400 gallons had been given yesterday. People start to come everywhere in Grande Saline on foot, on bicycles, motorcycles and someone in a truck to come to pick up water and said: “This is the water we never drink in Grande Saline before ” They are so happy. Please share our joy with everyone. Thank you so much.”
We are receiving regular updates from the community in Grande Saline and we hear that the people are very happy to have clean water to drink. The operators are successfully running the system for six hours each day and many people are coming for water. They are filling buckets and bottles from the system instead of taking the water directly from the river.
Computer classes continue at Don Bosco Ecole Informatique de Rossignol. Some of the computer students have started to learn to use PowerPoint. A group of students at George F. Johnson (GFJ) Elementary School in Endicott are meeting weekly after school to work on PowerPoints to share with the students in Haiti. Their teacher reports that they are making PowerPoint presentations with many pictures showing their families, homes and schools. Pastor Mike Willis from the Vestal United Methodist Church (who has worked in Haiti for many years) is teaching the GFJ students about Haiti and translating their work into Haitian Creole.
The GFJ students have made enough money selling hot chocolate to purchase over 50 USB drives for the students in Haiti. They wanted to provide the students in Haiti with something that they can use to store their work. We hope to deliver the USB drives to Haiti sometime this summer. We also look forward to sharing the GFJ student presentations with the students at Don Bosco Ecole Informatique de Rossignol and at the Good Samaritan Mission School in Cite Soleil.
We are proud of the progress we have made but excited about our future projects as well. We are currently raising money for solar power equipment for the water filtration system and for the computer school in Cite Soleil. We are also accepting applications for our 2016 Health for Haiti class. Please visit the “Home” page of our website for an application and fact sheet.
I am so happy and excited to report that the Health for Haiti team has successfully installed the Pall Aria AX1 microfiltration system in Grande Saline and the people in this community now have clean water to drink! Paula Stapf, Tom Collart, Esterling Accime and Joseph Johnson (JJ) have been working hard this week and were successful in starting the system tonight. My dad tells me that the people are very happy and excited about the clean water. It was a tough day, the red truck broke down and they actually hired a tap-tap to get to Grande Saline (many hours later than they had hoped). But, after a year of hard work, we have achieved our goal! Thank you to Pall Corporation for the generous donation of the AX1 system and for lending us the amazing team of Paula and Jodi, thanks to Geodis for helping us ship our equipment and for never giving up over many, many months, and thanks to our incredible Health for Haiti team! We did it!!!
The system can filter about 1,000 gallons of water each hour, and we plan to run the system for about six hours a day. This will provide enough clean water for thousands of people in the community! We have hired three members of the community to serve as operators, and Paula will continue to work with them this week to teach them how to maintain and run the system. Health for Haiti donation money will be used to pay the operators and to purchase the fuel needed to power the system. We are now raising money to purchase equipment needed to run the system with solar power. This is a very important next step in our project because gas is very expensive and hard to deliver to remote Grande Saline. I
This project started when one of our 2014 Health for Haiti students (Hannah Cempa) raised her hand in class and said, “My dad works for a company that makes water filtration systems”. Thank you to Hannah and all of our amazing Health for Haiti students for making such a difference in the world! Please see the pictures below for a look back at our project!
Computer classes continue in Grande Saline and the school is adding more students. The solar equipment installed by the 2015 Health for Haiti class is working well and the new table allows ten or more children to work at the same time. I am happy to report that the community in Grande Saline has decided on a name for their computer school: “Don Bosco Ecole Informatique de Rossignol”. The families chose this name for their school in honor of Saint John Bosco, an Italian priest who dedicated his life to the education of street children and disadvantaged youths. In a recent message, Dr. Robinson explained how the parents feel about the school, “They are so happy and say it’s a privilege for them to get this school in their area and so happy to see the children and young people learning computer. The school is in the benefit of all of them, and they feel their children learn something better for their future.”
Below are some recent pictures from computer class at Don Bosco Ecole Informatique de Rossignol. Thank you to the Bridging the Digital Divide Program (BDDP), the SUNY Broome BIT department, Geodis, and Pall for computer literacy training materials and laptops, and thanks to all who have made donations to support the Bridge to Haiti program.