A month in the life of a water filter project

The following blog will provide a pictorial representation of one aspect of a typical water filter project as reported by our partners, Ivan and Rocio from Fundación Red Proyecto Gente.

Preliminary to any project, contact is made with possible co-partners in the zone. In the month of March, Ivan and Rocio met with an organization called SEPAS – San Gil, a Pastoral Social organization, to plan a pilot project in which 60 families from Santander would be served. The training workshop was held on March 11 & 12 for 19 representatives of 16 parishes. Training included theoretical plus practical components.

Sifting sand is hard work!
Another team mixes gravel with cement powder and water to make concrete.
The concrete is poured into a mold and given time to dry. This photo shows the process of removing the mold from the concrete filter box.

Throughout the month of March, Ivan and Rocio visited 6 crushers and/or quarries to find appropriate materials for concrete. They chose gravel from one and sand from another.

The group chose a person to be in charge of construction of 60 filter boxes and a site for construction was provided by SEPAS – Pastoral Social de San Gil.
Next the ground for construction of the filter box is prepared.
Gravel and sand is delivered to the construction site.
Gravel is graded and sand is sifted for filter box construction.
Filter boxes are left full of water for 7 days and then examined for defects and leaks.

In parallel with this process, installers, community coordinators and beneficiary families are selected and trained. As well, filter media materials are ordered. In conclusion, filter box training and construction is an important step but not the only one in the process of providing safe water to communities.

This pilot project was funded by the Rotary Club of Calgary at Stampede Park in collaboration with CAPD.