Started: July 2022
Current Project Managers:
Meghan Horan and Lizzie Maly
Past Project Managers:
Las Pencas and Las Mesas are two neighboring communities in Estelí, Nicaragua, found in the northwestern region of the country. Both communities are less than an hour from La Trinidad, where the local government is based. They produce beans, maize, chia seed, and flax seed, and also raise cattle. Las Pencas has 96 households and 375 inhabitants, while Las Mesas has 40 households and 133 inhabitants. The project will incorporate construction of a new water storage tank - placed at a higher elevation - to accommodate a greater capacity given the growth of the community, including the 15 houses currently not being serviced. Additionally, it will require a new distribution network that outputs water to household taps. The community has also requested service meters to support the 136 houses and select animal husbandry practices. It will likely require the replacement of some of the existing piping, since the current pipes are almost 30 years old.
The Nicaragua project is currently in the design phase, working to analyze all of the data we collected during assessment in order to create a system that best serves our community. While our design team is hard at work performing calculations to assess piping routes and water availability, our special operations team is evaluating the community's needs from the system, and our finance group is busy writing grants and planning fundraisers to support the project! We hope to start purchasing materials and implementing our design in the spring!
The Nicaragua project completed a remote assessment in February of 2023 to collect information of the existing system, complete water quality testing of the source water, and discuss the water demands of the communities we are partnering with! The team is now in the early stages of the design process and hopes to begin implementation of the new water distribution system next spring.
In the meantime, we have been submitting grant proposals and conducting fundraisers to continue to raise financial support for our project. We also hosted a surveying workshop to teach our members how to collect elevation data in the field!
Right now, our team has been working on writing up the pre-assessment document and coordinating travel plans for January 2023. We plan to travel to Estelí in January 2023 in order to complete our first assessment trip. During this trip, we have two main objectives: to provide a planning tool for chapters to use to ensure that the pertinent information is gathered during the site assessment visit and to provide EWB-USA staff and external reviewers with information about the trip in order to make recommendations to improve the quality of the project.
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