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In 2017, the Houston-based Montana Cahill Foundation, led by OGS members and S&T alumni Peggy Cahill Montana, ChE’76, and Duane Montana, CE’75, awarded the largest gift in the history of Engineers Without Borders at Missouri S&T: a $500,000 challenge grant. To date, $350,000 has been raised in response to the challenge, much of it from OGS members, including a $250,000 gift from David, ME’93, and Ann Heikkinen, a $50,000 challenge from Rick Stephenson, S&T professor emeritus of civil engineering and longtime advisor to the chapter, and a $25,000 gift from Bipin, ChE’62, MS ChE’63, and Linda Doshi. EWB is only $150,000 away from reaching its goal of raising $1 million. For information on matching funds available, contact Tory Verkamp at email@example.com or 573-341-6090.
-excerpt from the February edition of the Order of The Golden Shillelagh Shillelagh newsletter
The EWB Faculty & Staff Talent Show is a great time for our students, faculty, and community to share in a fun-filled night to show off some of the lesser known skills of our teachers! Come out and support Missouri S&T, while also helping our chapter raise the money needed to send our students to the communities they are working with. Ticket pricing for the show is as follows: for adults, premium seating is $20 and standard seating is $15, and for students/ children ages 5-10, premium is $15 and standard is $10.
Project For Awesome is a YouTube fundraiser that gives money to 22 non profit organizations around the world each year. Click here to watch our video!
Two major donors have stepped forward to provide $750,000 in funding for EWB – a $500,000 challenge grant from the Houston-based Montana Cahill Foundation and a $250,000 gift from Missouri S&T graduate David Heikkinen and his wife, Ann. The Montana Cahill Foundation challenge grant is the largest gift in the history of S&T’s EWB Chapter. It will match every dollar contributed to the chapter up to $500,000 to create a $1 million fund in support of EWB. The Heikkinens’ gift is the second-largest in chapter history and brings the challenge halfway to its goal of raising $500,000.
With $250,000 in challenge funds remaining, contributions are still needed. To take part in this limited matching opportunity, indicate on your check’s memo line, “EWB- Montana Cahill Foundation Challenge.” For credit card donations, see our Donate page for a link to give online.
Gifts designated directly to EWB will be used for much needed annual support until our $1 million match is fulfilled.
This summer the team returned to Nahualate to participate in a community commencement ceremony in which we turned over the financial responsibility of the project to the Nahualate Water Committee. The project is a water distribution system that includes a 430 foot well, 15,000 gallon storage tank, chlorination system, and 8 miles of distribution pipe. While in community, the team assessed the project and all systems are working as designed. The system is now servicing 500+ homes. Many community members commented on how the water project has changed their way of living as they no longer have to worry about the purity of their water. The Community also has constant access to water, even during the dry season, without having to walk miles to retrieve it from the river. Our team spent some time explaining the financial sustainability of the system to the community so that they are aware of the importance of recognizing leaks in the system as well as the importance of paying their bills on time.
While in Guatemala the team also visited a new community, Paraje Xecaxjoj. This community is in desperate need of a school. The team did a preliminary assessment of the community’s willingness and ability to support the project economically and socially. The new project will include a rainwater drainage system, retaining walls, and a school housing k-6th grade complete with a kitchen. Currently, the community has four separate single roomed buildings for class and due to a lack of space, some grade levels share a single room. Our team, as well as the Paraje Xecaxjoj community members, are excited about working together on the project. Overall the trip was a success. The team was thrilled to see Nahualate taking full responsibility of their water system and we are eager to begin work with Paraje Xecaxjoj.
Our chapter currently has a crowdfunding campaign going on through the Missouri S&T crowdfunding website. We are hoping to raise $5,000 for our Puerto Pando team which is traveling this May to implement a large portion of their project that will greatly improve the water quality for their community.
Follow this link: https://crowdfunding.mst.edu/project/5618
Make sure to go check out the video and see how you can help.
This year we are hosting a golf tournament at the St. James Golf Club. All proceeds go towards helping our communities in Guatemala, Honduras, and Bolivia. You can sign up as an individual for $75 or get a team of 3 together for $200. We will have a shotgun start at 1pm.
The fee you pay includes:
the green fee
2 drink tickets
dinner provided by Randy’s Roadkill
We have two specialty holes where prizes will be given to the winners. The specialty holes are closest to pin and longest drive.
We are selling Mulligans for $5 a piece or 3 for $10.
If you’d like to register please print off the flyer, fill it out, and return it to the address listed or contact Emily Echele at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have any questions, please reach out to us. We hope to see you there!
Major milestones were reached during the Thanksgiving Implementation trip to Guatmala for the potable water project in Nahualate. The installation of a 20HP submersible well pump and the completion of the distribution system during a five day trip in November 2016 will bring clean running water to the 500 families living in the community. A team of 6 students and 2 mentors travelled to Guatemala to oversee the installation of the well pump and perform initial tests on filling the 15,000 gallon elevated tank. Working with our in-country partners the team accomplished their goals by pumping water to the tank and emptying the tank via the distribution system. The community of Nahaulate celebrated in this milestone and eagerly await the water system to provide clean drinking water in their homes. Only a few tasks remain before the system can be tested as a whole, namely the 3-phase power required to operate the well pump must be mended by the power utility in the area. We are working closely with this company and predict a successful start in early 2017.
How old are you?
What is your role in the community?
I am the sub-president for the urbanization of Puerto Pando. I lead when the alcalde (president/mayor) is not here.
How long have you lived in the community?
I have live in in the urbanization for the last 8 years.
What is your profession?
I attended university in La Paz for two years where I entered my studies in agricultural engineering and later came back here. I work as a carpenter by looking at furniture and then recreating it from what I saw. A so serving the community as the sub-president.
Why did you not continue education in La Paz?
La Paz was not home, I did not like the business of La Paz and I wanted to help those here. University taught me much but I could not continue and not help now. I did not have money to continue education at the university but I can still make money here.
How do you feel about the current water system in Puerto Pando?
Our water is not very clean. We must boil the water before we use it and sometimes there isn’t any water for us to use. Some people use the river for bathing and doing laundry because they don’t have any water near their homes. Our new system is working fairly well but there are problems with the tank that we know will cause it to stop working. We don’t like the color of the water because it is milky and is making people sick, especially the children. We are willing to work and do anything we can to get the community clean water but we don’t always know how.
Are you willing to help pay for the maintenance of a new water system?
Yes. I know that a new and better system might require the members of the urbanization to pay more and I know we all will help pay it. We pay a small fee currently for our system and if we can have clean water we are willing to pay what we must to make that happen.
What do you think about Engineers Without Borders being in Puerto Pando?
The students and adults are here to help our urbanization achieve our goal of getting clean water to the community. We have needed clean water for years and our system is not lasting. We are glad you have come because it means we will have water soon and things will be easier from now on.
Do you understand how we, Engineers Without Borders, help the community? We have been here for two days now and you have seen what we are doing. Do you have questions?
I understand that you are here to help everyone. You have asked the other (community members) questions about our water and the lives we have and I know that is for you to help. What you are doing with the machine, surveying the land, I don’t quite understand but I know it will help us because you have done this before. We want to help everyone succeed and that is why we have gone with you when you go in the jungle and to the spring. If we help you it can help everyone with new water. How long with it take to get clean water? [We do not have a set date but we will work as fast as we can.] What can I do and what can the urbanization do to help you? [I don’t know yet but we will have a list before we leave.]
In order for our organization to travel to Puerto Pando and other communities, we need the help of donors (people who give us money to help others, like Puerto Pando) who make it possible to come here and get you water. Do you have anything you would want to say to these people?
We are thankful for the help these students give us. We have just meet (together) and already I know they will help the urbanization. I understand you provide money to these students and that you make it possible to help us. For that I say thank you from my community and myself for finding and helping us. We hope you help others too like out urbanization.
The Day of the Dead 5K is one of our biggest fundraisers we do each year. It is held at Meramec Vineyards on the weekend of Halloween. It is a beautiful run and tends to be a very nice temperature at that time of year. It costs $20 to register before hand and $30 on race day, that registration fee also includes a t- shirt. To register for the race go to https://racesonline.com/events/engineers-without-borders-day-of-the-dead-5k-run.