13 November 2017

Liberia: Navigating Liberia Water, Sanitation Problem

The Liberia water and sanitation system crisis have drawn the attention of Bowier Trust Foundation Switzerland, a non-governmental organization involved with humanitarian services which has taken keen interest in solving some of the water problems in Liberia.

The foundation is currently carrying out an assessment in six blocs within the SD Cooper Community outside the Capital Monrovia on possible water management, drainage construction and creating good sanitation needs.

The cost of the assessment is estimated at $US100, 000, said to be provided through the courtesy of three Rotary clubs in Switzerland as a result of a memorandum of understanding signed with the Sinkor Rotary Club.

Residents of the SD Cooper Community told FrontPage Africa that water, sanitation and drainage management have been a challenged in the area over the years.

One community leader Otis Willie said access to safe drinking water is difficult while residents are using the beaches for toilets and dumping of garbage.

"We want you people to help us with our water problem because the wells we are using for drinking purposes are unhealthy and people are now using the beaches to throw their garbage," Otis said.

Another resident, a female noted that the drainage system is troubling especially during the rainy season, raising concern over the possibility of Bowier Trust to extend its drainage project within the community and not along the main street alone.

However, three Executives of the organization from Switzerland have concluded discussions with community dwellers in the SD Cooper area as well as students from the Stella Maris Polytechnic Engineer department on a way management water supply in the area.

They include Bowier Trust Foundation Switzerland President, Felix Walz, Markor Blatti a member of the Board of the organization and a Hydraulic Engineer, Ralp Widmer who will spearhead an interexchange program with his country and students of the Stella Maris Polytechnic in Liberia.

Bowier Trust Foundation Switzerland President Walz told FrontPage Africa Thursday that the assessment on water supply in the SD Cooper Community is part of humanitarian projects by the foundation to help solve some of Liberia's health and sanitation challenges.

As a contribution to humanity as a retire security personnel in Switzerland, Walts said his concentration was driven to schools as an epic center of what reflects on communities with a focus on health, sanitation, water supply and education amongst other.

But currently, he said the foundation is interested on water supply that would contribute to health and sanitation.

He noted that analysis is being conducted by the foundation as a first step in implementing their projects.

Walz stressed the importance of differentiating sanitation water and drinking water, something according to him is often not taken into consideration by actors in the water sector.

"We need to differentiate between sanitation water and drinking water and that is currently ongoing and the results are pending, but it will take time until we can make a clear conceptive sign," Walz said.

These assessments analysis according to him would enable the foundation to give a clear illustration of how they intend to implement their water project that will last for a longer time.

Walz further stated that a sustainable water system would greatly impact the lives of residents of SD Cooper Community and its environs positively as well as helping to boost government water supply initiative.

With an establishment of a quality water supply system, the Bowier Trust Foundation Switzerland President maintained that adequate attention will be given to sewage and drainage system, including drainage which poses difficulties to water supply.

As a result of this project, Walz said negotiation is currently ongoing between the foundation and Stella Maris Polytechnic for students in hydraulic engineering at the Liberian institution to be sent for dedicated specialized training.

"They will be sent to Switzerland for dedicated specialized training and vice-versa, we Bachelor students who will be joining us," Walz asserted.

At the same time, a Board Member of the foundation Markor Blatti said the institution is keen on ensuring that schools receive good health sanitation and water supply.

Distributing balls to students at the Immanuel Church in SD Cooper Community Thursday, Blatti said the distribution of "MYBALL to students is part of the foundation own way of helping to provide students the chance to actively associate themselves with others on campus.

He said the security of Liberia matters much to the implementation of nongovernmental organizations projects.

"For our future, our NGO and others NGOs in Switzerland it's very important that you have a safe country. We are already here but there are other NGOs that want to arrive, but the only thing is that we must have a safe country," Blatti intoned.

For his part, one of the student volunteers at the Stella Maris Polytechnic Laryee Sannor named the move by Bowier Trust Foundation Switzerland to include them into the water project as magnificent to improving their careers.

"Even though we have not gotten our degree yet, but this project is something we are exposed to and this initiative has been very good for the students of Stella Maris," student Sannor averred.

He named the establishment of a water network for SD Cooper Road as one key thing that students association with Bowier Trust Foundation recognized.

Meanwhile student Sannor said the network of water supply will enable students work with Bowier Trust Foundation to implement the water management project that would be sustainable for generational used.

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