As part of the inaugural Project Happy Feet Volunteer Leadership Experience, the volunteer team pooled together a sum of USD4,000, a portion of which went towards various scholarships and the purchase of school supplies for underprivileged children in Siem Reap. A portion of the funds also went towards Trailblazer Foundation to install two bio-sand water filtration systems in a local village.
Trailblazer Foundation is an organization which provides training and technology to empower villagers to create self-sustaining programs. The bio-sand water filtration technology was developed by the Trailblazer Foundation to provide potable water to the villagers in an affordable and effective manner. In 2011 alone, Trailblazer Foundation managed to provide 391 bio-sand water filters to rural families in SIem Reap, bringing water and hope of a better life, to nearly 6,000 people. Each water filtration system costs USD 60, and is able to support a community of villagers.
The first water filtration system funded by PHFVLX volunteers was delivered to Svay Chek village in Svay Chek commune, Angkor Thom district by Trailblazer Foundation and was successfully installed in April 2012.
The second water filtration system was delivered to the Shinta Mani Foundation for installation at Smach Village. Two months later, after the Khmer New Year holidays, the bio-sand water filter was successfully installed in the school canteen, providing clean, drinkable water for both the students and the community.
The Shinta Mani Foundation supports various community development programs and funds a development centre where they educate young adults in the area of culinary as well as hotel management skills so they can earn a living in the near future. One of their community projects is at Smach Primary School, located in Smach Village, in the San Sok Commune of Siem Reap Cambodia. The Shinta Mani Foundation has been funding the school’s breakfast programme and is currently helping to build a library for the students.
While visiting Smach village, the PHFVLX team identified that clean water was a problem for the villagers. The residents drew water from a community water pump and although the water looked clean, the villagers still needed to boil the water before consuming. This meant not only greater inconvenience, but also a drain on already limited resources. It was then that PHFVLX team decided that one of the two water filters from Trailblazers Foundation should go to Smach Village.
To learn more about Trailblazer’s bio-sand water filter, click here.
To learn more about how you can support Project Happy Feet’s efforts in empowering lives through education and training, email firstname.lastname@example.org.