The Diocese of Auki is on the island of Malaita in the Solomon Islands
Malaita is a large island but good agricultural land is scarce.
The water project is in a rural area consisting of six small villages.
Where do the villagers get fresh water from? Auki is a coastal area surrounded by sea water. So where do the people get fresh water from? The source of the water is an underground rain-fed stream which flows into a concrete tank. What do you think?
At the moment water from the stream flows into the tank and then into 12 existing outlets. During a review of the system in 2012, only five outlets were working... very slowly! There were no taps, so the pipes were always dripping – wasting water.
The original system was built in 1970 using galvanised iron pipes. In 2012 the pipes were found to be corroding and clogged with silt. Some pipes were broken.
One of the partners involved in the water project is the Catholic Diocese of Auki, represented by Liborio Maemauri (left) and Francis Waleliofala (right). Who do you think the man in the red t-shirt is?
Nick Borthwick from Caritas Aotearoa NZ works with communities in places like Solomon Islands to help people achieve their goals and dreams – in things like education, agriculture and human rights.
Stage one of the Auki water project (Dec 2012) was to repair the tank and improve the water flow.
Now it takes less than a minute to fill a bucket with water. It used to take up to 20 minutes!
Stage two of the project is to construct 17 more stand pipes and taps and concrete skirts, like this one in the village of Kwainaketo.
Partnership at Work: A community meeting The Chairperson of the local water committee is speaking to the local people.
The local people are going to raise some of the money for stage two of the project
Lets recap what youve learned!! How will the new water system make life better for the six communities in Auki? Water is safer and cleaner. (There is less rust, silt and residue in the new pipes.) It takes less time to collect water and do household washing. Less water is wasted because the taps can turn the water flow on and off.
Families will be healthier because of improved access to clean water for washing and bathing.
Access to clean drinking water will also improve.
Help Caritas continue improving water systems in Auki. Go to www.caritaschallenge.org.nz
Photos: Adrian Heke Philip Gibbs Nick Borthwick