B4CW is very excited to announce our newest project in the country of Belize! This began in January 2018 and has been growing very quickly ever since. B4CW sent 3 members down to Belize during Spring Break (March) 2018 for our first assessment trip. During this trip, we began building relationships with not only a community that we will be working with to bring access to clean water but also with various engineers, NGOs, and other people who will be able to help us make this project a success.
In August of 2018, B4CW sent 4 members to return to Belize to complete Assessment 02. During this trip, we signed a Memorandum of Agreement with the community of San Lucas. In this agreement, B4CW committed to bringing 25 LifeStraw Community water filters with a 5% contribution that each family of San Lucas agreed to.
In January of 2019, B4CW implemented this project! We delivered all 25 of the filters to San Lucas! Not only did we distribute the filters to households, but we also led workshops to different groups within the community. These workshops focused on topics including water sources, hygiene, and germ theory to explain why filtering water is such an important step towards better health. We also talked about how to properly use the LifeStraw Community filters and how to properly maintain them.
This initiative has allowed our club members to be involved in the project from start to finish--from reaching out to the community, to assessing the need, to fundraising, to assisting in the implementation of the project, and to keeping in contact with the community afterward. In having such great involvement in the project, our hope is to ensure a sustainable project that the community not only needs but wants. We are ready to learn, be challenged, and grow as we continue moving in this direction.
Another major aspect of our initiative in Belize is leading educational water workshops for local students. Throughout the past year, we have completed two workshops each at different high schools within the Toledo District. The first was in collaboration with Corazon Creek High School in the village of Corazon. The second was in collaboration with Julian Cho Technical High School located in Punta Gorda, Belize. At these workshops, we focused on topics including water quality, water sources, hygiene, and germ theory. We additionally allowed the students to split up into breakout sessions where they could have hands-on experience practicing the water testing we do in the field. Both workshops were wonderfully successful. Each group of students was very passionate about learning. They were enthusiastic about participating and asked great questions.
From here, we will continue working with engineering professionals here in the St. Louis area and at Parks College of Engineering, Aviation and Technology at Saint Louis University, as well as many individuals and organizations on the ground in Belize. Additionally, we will be working towards developing our education workshops further as well as expanding to find more communities in need.
To can donate and help sponsor this project, visiting our GoFundMe page .