In May of this year, the Water and Sanitation Global Grant Team of the Chiang Mai International Rotary Club (CMIRC) and The Fig Garden Rotary Club from Fresno, California, received uplifting news from The Rotary Foundation. Our Global Grant request for US$330,000 had been approved and fully funded, marking the start of a transformative project. This initiative aimed to provide clean water and sanitation systems to 21 remote mountain villages in Mae Hong Son Province, Chiang Rai Province, and Chiang Mai Province, with the help of their local partner, the Integrated Tribal Development Foundation (ITDF).
The Project's Scope and Impact
The project was mapped out as a three-year endeavor, targeting the completion of seven villages each year. The strategy was clear: first, provide clean running water to each village, followed by the construction of toilets and bathing areas for each home. Once these essentials were in place, the team would explore additional avenues for community development.
Transforming Villages, One Step at a Time
The project has already made significant progress, with clean water and sanitation installations completed in four villages, benefiting 585 people. Work has commenced in two more villages, aligning the project with its goal of seven village completions in the first year.
The Impact of Clean Water
The impact of clean water and sanitation on these communities cannot be overstated. Access to clean water contributes to improved health, reduced waterborne diseases, and an overall better quality of life. Additionally, the provision of nearby toilets and bathing facilities enhances dignity, convenience, and privacy, all of which are vital aspects of well-being.
CMIRC, Fig Garden Rotary Club, and ITDF are actively changing lives in these remote mountain villages, proving that collective determination, funding, and cooperation can bring about transformative change.
Videos are courtesy of CMIRC Foundation Chair Patrick Desloge and Documentary Photographer John Hulme