This project was a Global Grant humanitarian project, totally funded by Rotary International, to which all credit goes. IPSO’s three directors, Dr. Bonanno, Dr. Acharya, and Mr. DiNapoli, participated as project experts (with Dr. Bonanno being also the project leader), delivering training and overseeing all phases of the project.
Water resources management for drinking water and community development in Gunung Kidul, Indonesia
The overall objective of this project was long-term sustainable community development through the management of water resources. In particular, this project provided drinking water to an area where the local population is suffering from extreme soil degradation and deriving water scarcity. Through the construction of rainwater harvesting tanks, the project was designed so as to provide drinking water not only during the rainy season, but also for the whole length of the dry season, when people have no choice but to buy bottled water to drink. With this system, water processed in excess is sold to neighbouring villages. This not only provides better living conditions for the target community, but it also boosts economic development and raises awareness about water and sanitation. In the last decades, the area has experienced aggressive deforestation and soil degradation. This has resulted in worrying levels of water scarcity and consequent serious malnutrition with water-related diseases. This project not only provided the local community with the necessary equipment, but it also provided the necessary training for them to be able to manage and monitor the installed system, from both a technical point of view as well as from a general knowledge perspective. This not only ensured the success of the project activities, but it also addressed the more important issues of sustainability and shared responsibility.
The rainwater harvesting and purifying system is a source of clean water used for drinking and cooking. The community was trained on how to keep it clean and maintain the system to avoid contamination. All members of the community now have equitable access to this water source. Individuals were also trained on how to safely storage water within theirhouseholds, thus raising their awareness on the benefits of safe water, sanitation and hygiene in general. In particular, awareness and prevention of dysentery and malaria were directly addressed.
The local community was trained on how to sustainably earn profits throughout the year by selling drinking water stored in excess to neighbouring communities with similar needs. This is allowing them to use their increased revenues (so far spent for buying drinking water during the dry season) for other purposes (from livestock provision to children education and entrepreneurial activities).