Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Senegalese Farmers Approve CTI’s New Grain Tools

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Perhaps Albert Camus said it best:

“Good intentions may do as much harm as malevolence if they lack understanding.”

Africa is littered with well-meaning aid programs gone wrong.

Traveling through rural villages, we’ve seen technology graveyards of industrial farming machines rusting in the sun because they’ve broken down or the community can’t afford the fuel to keep them running.

In our 30 years of developing and implementing appropriate technologies, we’ve learned that no idea—no matter how noble or innovative—can succeed without community collaboration.

After learning from farmers that they were losing more than a third of their grain due to inefficient processing methods, CTI began developing a concept for a set of manually-operated grain processing tools. For the past three years, we’ve met with farmers in West Africa to get their take on our equipment. Beyond whether or not the technology is effective, we want to know that it’s culturally appropriate and desired. Because, as brilliant as an idea may be, if the people don’t want it, it won’t work.

In November, CTI Executive Director Roger Salway and Program Manager Andrea Brovold visited 20 villages in Senegal to meet with farmers and have them test the equipment.  The farmers were elated, but don’t take our word for it, they can speak for themselves.

"I like the lack of yields lost in the process, the clean unbroken grain, but most importantly, what would take 10 women to do in an hour now takes 1 woman 10 minutes." - Omar Sarr, Farmer

“I like the lack of yields lost in the process, the clean unbroken grain, but most importantly, what would take 10 women to do in an hour now takes 1 woman 10 minutes.” – Omar Sarr, Farmer

One of the most perceptive responses came from Cheickh Dame, an established farmer. “In my father’s generation, the introduction of fertilizers was the boom. Those that were not early adopters or that didn’t believe this would help are no longer here. As soon as these technologies are made available, I will be the first in line.” His sentiment was echoed in many of the villages we visited. Not only do the farmers desire the equipment, they would gladly purchase it given the opportunity.

It may surprise some people, but even in the most desperately poor communities, people don’t want handouts, they want opportunities. Whether it’s a community pooling its resources to fund clean water, or women paying back a loan with their grinding business, the people we meet are smart, hardworking, and fiercely proud of what they can accomplish.

Experience has taught us that development works best when people are helping themselves. With this in mind, CTI is passing on its knowledge and technology to Africans. After our recent field tests, CTI’s prototype equipment was purchased by USAID and will continue to be operated in Senegal in collaboration with the National Cooperative Business Association, who is helping farmers improve their value chain for pearl millet grain. We have identified a manufacturer in Senegal that can build the grain processing technology and a Senegalese distributor that will train communities to use the equipment.

Thank you for your support as we’ve worked to get these tools right. This has been years in the making, but we are nearly ready to get these tools in the hands of the farmers who need them. In the words of one woman in Senegal:

“We are thankful we are thankful we are thankful!”

Monday, 28 November 2011

Meeting with Rice Farmers in Vietnam

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By Steve Laible, CTI Volunteer

Steve and Nancy Laible, CTI volunteers

As part of my project work with CTI, I along with my wife, Nancy Laible,  have been involved with the development of a device that uses rice hulls as a “feedstock” and converts them into a cooking fuel. The rice hull makes up about 20% by weight of the rice kernel. The goal of our current work in Vietnam is to gain an understanding of the communities where rice milling is taking place. If conditions and supply are appropriate, there may be an opportunity to introduce a rice hull production device into the area.

Vietnamese Rice Mill

After visiting a rice farm, we travel a few miles to a local rice mill. Because we are between harvest seasons, the mill is not active. There is a “watchman” (actually a watch woman) on duty in the small office. Our guide, Dai Tran, strikes up a conversation with her and we are able to ask a few questions. As the woman warms to our presence, she offers to give us a tour of the rice mill. It is clear that the equipment in the mill is very old, but functional. This particular mill serves a local market. Thus, much of the rice is sold in the area after processing.

Rice Hulls as cooking fuel

A portion of the rice hull by-product is used as fuel in large cook stoves where the function is to maintain a hot fire for long periods of time. The stoves used to burn bulk rice hulls are very similar to the “cook stoves” used in the USA some 80 to100 years ago when it was common to burn corn cobs in farming areas. The cook stoves are able to use the energy value of some of the rice hulls, but the large stoves and the bulk fuel is not practical for home use. We have gained useful information from this visit. We say farewell to our hostess and continue or quest for a more modern mill and more information about using rice hulls as fuel.

Friday, 30 September 2011

CTI Supporters Celebrate 30 Years

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In September, over 150 volunteers, donors and partners gathered to celebrate CTI’s 30th anniversary at the White Bear Lake United Methodist Church. Thank you to the many volunteers that helped organize the celebration. To see photos from the event, check out the online photo gallery.
Wednesday, 01 June 2011

CTI Fufills Its Promise to Ground Nut Farmers

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Two years ago CTI was issued a challenge from the McKnight Foundation: help farming villages in Malawi and Tanzania improve groundnut production efficiency and nutrition among young children. Rather than arrive in East Africa with pre-determined solutions and tools in hand, CTI and our partners at Sokoine University of Agriculture and ICRISAT knew it would be essential to start by listening to the farmers and building trust with the communities.

During the first year of the project, we traveled to 32 communities in Malawi and Tanzania to interview 640 families about the challenges they face producing groundnuts and struggling to feed their families. Across communities and countries, the farmers expressed frustration with harvesting, stripping, and shelling groundnuts – operations which are usually performed tediously by hand and largely by women.

The CTI team began focusing their efforts on developing a more efficient method of stripping groundnut pods from the plant, which farmers (primarily women) currently do by hand, pod-by-pod. We gathered a research team to investigate existing technologies for stripping groundnuts and after delving through journal archives and warehouses at research institutes, the team identified three potential devices for proof-of-concept evaluation.

In May, Bert Rivers and Steve Clarke brought these devices to Malawi to test in controlled on-station trials and in the field with project farmers. Besides gathering statistical data on equipment performance, the team gathered feedback from the farmers they had interviewed, who were delighted that CTI had lived up to its promise to include them in designing the solution.

 “The farmers were thrilled. We had been promising for the past year as we collected information from them that we were coming back with equipment and we did. We kept our promise. The credibility of CTI and the McKnight Foundation jumped immeasurably because of our actions.”   – Bert Rivers, CTI VP of Operations

 CTI’s team will use the farmers’ feedback to further develop prototypes for groundnut stripping. In addition, we will begin researching improved methods for harvesting and shelling groundnuts as these were also identified as major impediments by the farmers. Concurrently with the introduction of these new devices, CTI and our partners are exploring new marketing options for the farmers and we are beginning to feed complementary foods to the babies involved in the study.

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

An Open Mind and Heart

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Written by  Andrea Brovold, Africa Co-Chair/Volunteer

One month ago, CTI volunteer, Andrea Brovold, and Executive Director, Roger Salway traveled to West Africa to share CTI’s new thresher and winnower prototypes with farmers in Mali and Senegal. While most of us were preparing food for our yearly Thanksgiving Day feast, Roger and Andrea were helping women in rural Senegal with their daily six hour ritual of threshing, winnowing, and grinding their family’s meal by hand. Here, Andrea shares her impressions from the trip that would test her physical and emotional limits, and leave her with unforgettable memories and lifelong friends.

Upon arrival to the Kuer Ali Guey village in the Kaolack region of Senegal, we were welcomed with open arms.  Awa, President of the Women’s Association said “Andrea, you look like you are a peaceful volunteer”.  It was the warm reception of Kuer Ali Guey and the surrounding villages and organizations from the very inception of this project that the rest of the trip would live up to, even surpass.  Come to think of it, while there were parameters in which we were expected to work towards, per NCBA/USAID along with objectives and outcomes to strive towards, my expectations–as per the opening title–were  “Going in with an open mind and heart”…and little more.

Quickly, I found that the universal language of love and compassion transcends any boundary or constraint, personal, professional or otherwise.  Put simply, the more you are willing to give of yourself, the more response and progress one will find.  Many village visits, meetings and relationships were forged due to our determination to serve.  And serve we did.  The thoughtful technologies of CTI, coupled with the sensitivity to cultural and individual differences, advanced this month long journey to a caliber of unexpected proportions.

 Some dialogue that we observed from various sources were “If you could visualize our interest, it would be as tall as a skyscraper!”, Ahmed Dame Cisse from Lat Mingue village; “You have a friend here…in me”, Dougal Guey in Kayemon village; and “C’est bon C’est bon C’est bon!”, a farmer from CARITAS. Most touching for me was a departure from a life-long friend I made despite the language barriers “I have left my heart with you”, said Therese, wife of CARITAS Geo-Scientist Renee with whom we dined at a Thanksgiving Feast to help us feel at “home” in their home.  Touching is the fact that each of these people are tickled by what our simple technologies can provide–a way and means for a better life–and touching is the fact that I have been blessed to have had the chance to help secure that opportunity.

Recently, at our December board meeting, I explained my obsession with taking photographs of doors. Each of us have had doors closed, only for others to be opened, and until CTI and pursuing my Masters in Development Policy with a concentration in Africa, it seems that there was a less definable period in my life.  Many “doors” and opportunities have been presented to me within this organization that I think so highly of, and I have been keen to act on those opportunities. Beyond that, I feel that it is my job to continue to open similar doors for the people CTI serves, those who are equally deserving, but without the ways or means. It is unconscionable to me to think that what CTI is able to provide will not be visible to most rural communities.  So I, like each of the equally passionate and eager volunteers at CTI, happily forge an exodus towards a goal of creating and supporting sustainable environments that will provide future generations with tools, education and kindred roots.

I had a lot of reflective moments during this trip, and I also blogged our adventures, seemingly because it would have been impossible to re-create most of these experiences after the fact.  But what resonates loudest in my mind are the moments that rendered me speechless (something that rarely happens).  It is these silent moments, personal exchanges, accepting smiles, joyous laughter and dancing that are impossible to prepare for, which allowed me to reflect most authentically and honestly that I am truly the most fortunate woman in the world.

We are called to do certain things in our lives, and it is what we do with that time that matters most.  Cliché perhaps, but I enjoy very much a quote I once heard, “In the end, it is not the amount of breaths you take it’s the moments that take your breath away.”

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Working Together to Leave Hunger and Poverty Behind

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For nearly 30 years, CTI has worked with volunteer engineers and scientists in heart of the Midwest United States’ agricultural belt to create food and water technologies that relieve hunger and poverty in the developing world. With the help of supporters and partners around the globe, we are providing meaningful and lasting solutions for “the bottom billion.”

Innovation that can feed the world: Many African pearl millet farmers struggle to produce enough food to make a living, yet they lose about half of their harvest using rudimentary processing tools.To develop innovative new equipment for processing pearl millet, one of the most widely eaten cereal crops in the developing world, we collaborated with volunteer scientists and engineers from the USDA, ICRISAT, and the OneLab Initiative. The result has been a breakthrough technology: the first successful hand-operated tools for threshing and winnowing the pearl millet. The set of devices can capture 90% of a farmer’s grain, potentially doubling the pearl millet food supply in some of the most famine-prone regions of the world.

“Sometimes providing a simple service like a grinder can transform a community”  – Curtis Rogers, NWHCM Community Development Coordinator

Partnering to deliver solutions for the “Bottom Billion”: After the devastating earthquake hit Haiti, CTI’s generous donors provided grinders to help feed and employ Haitians. Since then, we have been helping Feed My Starving Children distribute grinders to their partner feeding sites throughout Haiti. At Northwest Haiti Christian Mission, CTI grinders have been made available to people in a number of towns, freeing them from a two to three hour walk to the nearest commercial miller. With grinders centrally located throughout Haiti, community members have an opportunity to produce nutritious food for their family or start businesses.

Engaging communities Development can only be sustainable with the participation of local communities. CTI’s culturally appropriate solutions empower locals to take ownership of their future. In Nicaragua, where less than half the people have access to clean drinking water, we’ve engaged community water groups to help install and maintain dozens of water chlorination devices in rural communities. By working together, CTI and rural Nicaraguans are providing clean drinking water for dozens of communities.

Without the support of CTI’s skilled volunteers and generous donors, thousands of families in rural Nicaragua would be without clean drinking water and farmers in Mali will continue to lose half of their livelihoods for lack of simple tools. Together, community by community, we can end extreme hunger and poverty!

Tuesday, 01 June 2010

Homa Bay Ewing Grinder Pilot Project

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By Kathleen Graham, Africa Committee Volunteer  

Beneath enormous African skies the rolling mountainsides of far Western Kenya are lush green with the spring rains.  Tribes of farmers who eke out a living far off the tourist track anxiously watch the crops they planted in February – will the rain be enough, erasing droughts of recent years; or too much, drowning the beautifully emerging fields of maize, soya beans, sorghum, and ground nuts?  As I move around the area where a year ago I introduced Ewing grinders I am struck that these farmers’ concern for the impact of weather on their livelihood echoes precisely that of Minnesota farmers.  And there all notion of shared typicality ends.

Homa Bay farmers till and weed and harvest by hand.  They furrow their brows when asked about the last harvest, uniformly noting that adequate moisture is not enough, as they cannot afford fertilizer, the crop could be much better.  Their homes have neither electricity nor indoor plumbing, and most have packed dirt floors.  Water is carried in jerry cans from boreholes or rivers kilometers away.  The daily diet consists of the staple ugali, a baked corn flour concoction that supplies calories but inadequate nutrition.  And as if I needed further confirmation that life here is radically different from whence I came, retired teacher and training participant Fred Aloo introduces me to his family of twelve children and two wives, before we travel to meet his neighbor and this group’s coordinator, John Oyaya Ogutu, who has thirty children with his four wives.

I ignored the temptation to indulge my curiosity and delve into the fascinating back stories and instead focused on the reason I was lurching for hours over unpaved roads and paths in a vehicle loaned by the venerable crop research organization ICRISAT.  A year earlier I had accepted the invitation of ICRISAT’S resident Nairobi manager Richard Jones, to collaborate with a PhD agronomist from Kenya Agricultural Research Institute, Nasambu Okoko, to train representatives of several farmers’ groups chosen by Nasambu how to use the Ewing grinder.  I had six Ewing grinders, purchased by family and friends, stored in Kenya.  Richard and Nasambu were interested in adding value to the ground nut crop they had partnered to introduce to farmers’ groups in the Kisii/Homa Bay area.  A pilot project, to test the usefulness and acceptability of the grinder, and the potential for adding value to a bare crop, was born.

At the 2009 two-day training each participant learned to disassemble, assemble, and clean the Ewing grinders.  Each took a turn processing local crops – g-nuts, sorghum, finger millet, cow peas and “green gram,” learning to adjust the burrs so the final product would be just the right texture for local taste.  And each participant was tested – could s/he stand up and teach the teachers what s/he had learned??  All passed, some barely.  Would they be able to convey a few key Ewing principles to their farmer members?

I had returned for the real test.  How have the six grinders that were loaned to the participants’ groups been used?  Armed with a questionnaire that seeks answers to questions suggested by a dozen people over five years, each day I traveled 40, 50 even 70 kilometers off the paved road that runs from Homa Bay on the swampy shores of Lake Victoria to Kisii in the highlands, to drone through my evaluation form. I had no idea how remote their farms and groups actually were.

Richard, Nasambu and I had readily agreed on desired outcomes.  We were most interested in 1) improved nutrition, bolstering the ubiquitous daily starch with nuts and more nutritious grains and 2) income generation, either through product sales or service grinding.  We can document both outcomes, in at least some and sometimes all families, of all groups who had a representative attend the training workshop. In one group of 24, the Koga Farmers’ Self Help Group, in addition to the two men who act as leader/coordinators, eight of the “mothers” (twenty of the group members are women with children) are making nut paste and selling it. They use the profit for school fees for their children.

Each of the six groups is different, in terms of crops processed and rules for grinder use. Koga processes just ground nuts, and a little soy.  Most other groups have experimented widely, with soy, sorghum, finger millet, green gram, the “new” crop grain amaranth, and even dried butternut squash and broken rice.  Because the quantities of these “designer” flours are so small, they could not interest the commercial posho (corn) mills to process them, so the friendly-sized Ewing allows them to experiment with new ingredients.  Another difference – while Koga pays those who crank the grinder and those who carry the paste to market, at the Hekima Widows and Orphans Self Help Group, they organize volunteers to do all the roasting and cranking, and the group applies the profits to projects they devise, for example. to support local orphans.

For a ten year veteran of Ewing grinder work in East Africa, what is so impressive about this trip is the consistency of grinder use among the groups and the quality of maintenance of the grinders.  Never have all the grinders been so well cleaned, so well-cared for, so respected.  The growing dependency of the groups on the grinders is actually a little unnerving.  What if a part fails, like the group that sorrowfully produced a deformed helix?  What will happen to the growing nut paste business or the millet flour service grinding if the grinder is down for days or weeks?

The other joy of the trip is the visible pride with which group members present the “new” foods they have discovered, beyond the popular nut paste.   As a result of having the grinder available, and the communal interactions it has fostered, several groups make a nutritious porridge, using sorghum, finger millet, cassava, amaranth, soya beans, and a small amount of nut paste, flavored with citrus juice and sugar; others a soya beverage;  “finger rolls” from sorghum and millet; and cakes, a totally new item.  The warm cake we were proudly served by St. Florence SHG, which looked like a light gingerbread, had soya, grain amaranth, and g-nut paste.

Nasambu Okoko was so excited by the food experiments we saw that she vowed to create recipes and share them among the other farmers’ groups with whom she works.  Moving forward, these groups are now offered the opportunity to buy the grinders, for a discounted price, and that money will be used to furnish more grinders for more area farmers.  CTI will establish a “parts depot” at Mrs. Okoko’s office.  And by next year it is planned that all the groups will be asked to keep the detailed records to reflect volume, income and profit that some groups already have.

Small but significant inroads for 120 families off the end of the tarmac!  Replicate??  Volunteer!

Monday, 01 March 2010

Ag-Waste Fuel Project Shows Great Promise

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During December 2009, CTI volunteers Nancy and Steve Laible visited CTI projects in Bangladesh. They were on hand for the Grand Opening of the “Bangaler Alo” operating facility at Parbatipur in northwest Bangladesh. The facility represents the culmination of 12 months of planning for CTI to help sponsor and develop an efficient and sustainable solution for the increasing need for cooking fuel in developing countries.

The primary food staple in Bangladesh is rice. The area around Parbatipur is one of the largest rice growing areas of Bangladesh. In addition to producing tons of rice, the area also produces tons of non-edible biomass in the form of rice straw, rice husks and rice hulls. The rice hulls are being use at the Bangaler Alo facility to produce an alternative cooking fuel. A fairly simple process using compression and heat (derived from electricity) is used to transform rice hulls into a suitable cooking fuel in the form of a four-foot long “fuel stick” weighing about 8 pounds. The resulting fuel is price competitive with firewood and cleaner burning than either firewood or animal dung.

Nancy and Steve report that during the development stage, the operating facility has already demonstrated a number of benefits, including:

  1. Planet Friendly: From an environmental point of view, the facility has the potential for producing a product that is an alternative to firewood, reducing deforestation and, in turn, improving soil quality for agriculture.
  2. People Friendly: In many developing countries, animal dung, firewood, and even plastic are common forms of cooking fuel. The use of these fuel sources often spreads disease and can cause infection, respiratory problems, and even blindness. Rice hull fuel has the potential to mitigate two well-known health hazards that affect women and children in developing countries that use animal dung or firewood as a primary cooking fuel.
  3. Provides Economic Opportunities: The facility provides an enterprise opportunity for locals. In-country volunteers are currently working with four women in three locations to help set up vending operations as part of the planned retail distribution system.

CTI volunteers are working on developing a simple method that would allow rural subsistence farmers to make their own fuel sticks by hand. Next steps are dependent in large part on finding corporate or social purpose sponsors who share the vision and mission of CTI. Sponsors are needed to realize the full potential and social benefit of the work that has been started.

Monday, 01 March 2010

Looking Forward in Haiti

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Following the catastrophic earthquake in Haiti in early January, CTI began to receive calls from relief organizations looking for manually operated equipment to process the food aid pouring into the country. Many organizations distributing food did not have access to electricity or gas, so there was great demand for hand-powered devices that could process flour and peanut butter. In response to this demand, generous donors paid for grinders and travel expenses, allowing CTI to send a volunteer to Haiti to distribute grinders and train the end users.

Upon arrival in Cap Haitien, CTI Americas Committee Vice Chair, Sam Usem, quickly realized that the desperate situation in the country extends far beyond the Port au Prince region. An estimated half-million people have fled Haiti’s capital in a little over a month. In Cap Haitian, on the north coast of Haiti, refugees have been pouring in looking for food, water, and relief from the destruction.

There is famous expression in Haiti, “Dèyè mon gen mon”, which roughly translates to, “beyond the mountains, there are mountains”. This expression has several meanings, and is often used to express the seemingly endless challenges the country has faced. Even before the earthquake, 80% of Haitians lived in poverty, and  88% of the rural population lived in poverty. However, Sam met with countless determined individuals who demonstrated that, despite their desperate circumstances, Haitians have never given up on working towards a better future.

While in Haiti, Sam had the opportunity to meet with RAFAVAL, a women’s group located in the town of Limonade. With the help of the Haitian development nonprofit, Sonje Ayiti, the women’s co-op had started a business making chocolate for hot cocoa. When presented with CTI’s Ewing Grinder, the women were thrilled that they will no longer have to travel to pay someone to grind their cocoa, saving them time and money.

“RAFAVAL will be making Hot Cocoa to distribute at makeshift shelters in Limonade and will use this new tool to make more Hot Cocoa to sell locally. This is not relief, but development and empowerment. Thanks to Compatible Technology International.” – Gabrielle, Country Director for Sonje Ayiti

Sam met with several other co-op groups throughout Haiti. While many people he encountered expressed reservations about believing more talk about “saving” Haiti, they still shared the hope that, this time, sustainable development will be more than a promise.

As refugees flee Port au Prince and settle in rural areas, there is an opportunity for an investment in Haiti’s long neglected countryside. Two-thirds of Haitians work in agriculture, yet the country imports between 57 and 80% of its food, and much of the population is subsisting on the edge of starvation. Haiti’s agriculture sector will be an essential component for building the country’s future.

CTI’s approach is very well suited to help revitalize agriculture in Haiti. CTI technologies are ideal for small-holder farmers and are adaptable to most food crops grown in Haiti. CTI is currently working on developing projects that will contribute to the sustainable rebuilding of Haiti.

In Haiti, the famous proverb, “Beyond the mountains, there are mountains,” is also used to express the idea that there are endless opportunities and infinite possibilities. In the months and years to come, Compatible Technology International will be working to provide opportunities to for Haitians to feed and support themselves. At CTI, we believe that there is a brighter future ahead for Haiti and we will hope you join us as we help Haitians build it.

Tuesday, 01 December 2009

Water Chlorinator Project in Nicaragua Restarted

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According to the 2006 United Nations Human Development Report, close to half of all people in developing countries are suffering at any given time from a health problem caused by water and sanitation deficits. For children under age five, water-related diseases are the leading causes of death with1.8 million children dying each year from diarrhea – 4,900 deaths each day. The World Health Organization has stated that no intervention has greater overall impact upon national development and public health than the provision of safe drinking water and the proper disposal of human waste. 

Compatible Technology International began development of a water chlorinator in 2002 after being contacted by the Nicaraguan government for help in correcting the badly contaminated water systems in the rural areas of that country.  The CTI 8 is a simple, unique water chlorinator(see photo below) that focuses on delivering clean water to rural communities with low to medium flow water systems that do not have access to water treatment or electricity, and have minimal economic resources.  Most water systems are designed for larger communities and are more costly to implement.  

The CTI 8 Water Chlorinator was initially installed in about 30 communities in Nicaragua under the direct supervision of Nicaraguan Water Ministry personnel. Unfortunately, a combination of issues arose that caused the water project to stall for a couple of years.  We were unable to obtain the necessary chlorine tablets and the Nicaraguan Water Ministry disbanded the office which had been supervising the CTI 8 installations. 

In 2009 CTI restarted the Water Chlorinator Project with the help of the Nicaragua Department of Health, who has committed their hygienists, employed by the Department of Health, to participate in this project at the Department’s expense. CTI has contracted with an epidemiologist in Nicaragua to restart the project.  He has visited all of the original installations and was pleasantly surprised to find that the vast majority of them had been maintained by the original water committees and were just waiting for the necessary chlorine tablets to make them operational once again. 

In addition to the CTI representative, the hygienists will be a valuable component of the project, as they live in the municipalities, know the rural communities, work in health in those communities, and have community health education around water as part of their responsibilities. The distance and location of the chlorinators in rural communities make the use of the hygienists important, as they are able to monitor the chlorinator installations as part of their daily work, eliminating the need for difficult and constant travel to monitor the installations.  While we are actively searching for a chlorine tablet supplier in Central America, a shipment of tablets was delivered from the US this month and we are awaiting word that at least some of the installations have been reactivated. 

The intent is to have this project be self sustaining within a year through the sale of the chlorine tablets and chlorinator systems, but until that time we are continuing to seek funds to support the work we are doing in Nicaragua.