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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.