At least 500 people from the student community of La Providencia and its surrounding areas now enjoy drinking water produced by an onsite modern purification plant using microfiltration and ozone treatment. With a capacity of 200 gallons per hour, it will serve the academy as well as the surrounding communities as a source of clean drinking water.
The materials and construction cost US$40,000, sponsored by Rotary Club of Memphis, The Witmer Group, Woodland Presbyterian Church, Living Waters for the World and Horizon La Providencia. The system’s installation highlights the importance of value-aligned partnerships, which can affect change in larger ways than a single entity can.
Horizon La Providencia is located in Honduras and is part of Horizon Empowers, an international not-for-profit organization working to empower orphaned children, vulnerable children and at-risk youth, as well as their families and communities. The organization includes more than 100 field staff across East Africa and Latin America, with additional staff in Canada and the United States.
Academia La Providencia is onsite at the Horizon Community in Honduras, where children within Horizon care attend school as well as many children from the wider community.
Samuel Fajardo, the academy’s principal, says the water system will serve more than just the students. “We will raise awareness of the importance of the environment for healthy water consumption through campaigns,” he says. “We will also sell this vital liquid to the surrounding communities at subsidized prices to reduce their health risks.”
Water is vital to health, but it’s also part of empowerment. Horizon measures empowerment according to a Child and Youth Empowerment Index (CYEI), one component being access to clean drinking water — a luxury that costs money some families don’t have. “The tap water is not fit for consumption,” Julissa Arana, Horizon employee in Honduras, says. “However, there are families who consume it due to lack of economic resources. Drinking the water can cause stomach diseases.”
A bottle of drinking water in Honduras costs an average of 40 Lempiras, or US$1.60. With the new system, community families will be able to purchase water bottles for only US$0.60. When children have access to clean water, they’re empowered to thrive and focus on other things like education.
Edwin Rodriguez, Living Waters for the World’s director in Honduras, explained that the system is designed to have broad social impact. “We will form three groups: the operators who will guarantee the good use and maintenance, the educators in health and spirituality, and the administrators, who will manage the future investments.”
Children also have an opportunity to learn about the environment, as the new system brings a new way to think about pollution’s effects: solid pollution can impact surface runoff, and chemical pollution can contaminate ground water. Students and those using the system can learn how behavior impacts our ecosystem, which can show up directly as contaminated, polluted water.
The system’s technology is easy to use and maintain, making it a sustainable water source for years to come. The purification methods used in the system also allow the water to retain its mineral concentration, boosting health.
This partnership aligns with Horizon Empowers’ mission, which is to empower orphaned children, vulnerable children and at-risk youth to self-sustainability. The project’s partners gathered at Academia La Providencia to inaugurate the system with a ceremony in late February, attended by representatives of the Rotary Club, Mr. Michael Peeler and Living Waters for the World, Mr. Doug Boggs and Horizon’s Regional Director, Mr. Ricardo Espinoza.
Partnerships like this inspire even more empowerment for children, youth, and their families and communities. If you are interested in empowering children with Horizon, connect with us today.
To learn more about Horizon Empowers, please visit our website: https://empowertheorphaned.org/
Written by: Marco Vásquez, Sarah Pryor, Nicole Scott