-- Donates several medical and non-medical equipment to Liberian communities
A non-governmental organization, Bowier Trust Foundation Switzerland (BTFS), says it has and continues to contribute meaningfully to the post-war development of Liberia in basic social services and health, but is yet to be acknowledged for its impact to the communities and people in Liberia.
"Our focus now is in health, water, hygiene, waste and health prevention, basic medical care," said Felix Walz, BTFS President.
Laryee A. Sannor, BTFS Operations Manager, also says the foundation is currently providing safe drinking water for the people in the SD Cooper Road community.
The need for safe drinking water is a challenge in most parts of Monrovia, especially during the dry season when there is less rainfall. But in spite of the dry season, the limited supply of pipe-borne water in Liberia's capital city, Monrovia, forces even the diplomatic missions in the city to rely on water-trucking in order to have running water in their offices and residences.
For more impoverished communities, where people rely on chlorinated bagged water from polluted wells, BTFS is primarily involved in the provision of WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) services, especially the provision of quality water sources to those underprivileged communities.
Sannor disclosed that the BTFS is about to sign a memorandum of understanding with the Stella Maris Polytechnic to provide basic knowledge of water quality measurement, solar technology and self-sufficient water filter technology.
Mr. Sannor said the foundation is also providing water filter system on the BTFS pilot project to International Christian Academy (ICA) school, located on S. D. Cooper Road and ultimately with the supply of over 4,000 people with bacteria free, clean drinking water.
Displaying images and texts of BTFS activities in a magazine produced by the organization, Sannor recalled that in September and December of last year, "we donated medical supplies and trained a good number of nurses from surrounding communities in Paynesville and provided desktop computers to some institutions."
However, amid all that the BTFS has done, the executives say their activities as an NGO, providing support to communities in crucial sectors, has not been recognized by the Government of Liberia.
BTF president, Felix Walz said such a recognition from the government will not only be in appreciation of the organization's work in the country but will help establish a relationship that will bring more benefits for Liberia. Such formal recognition, Walz believes, will also promote the prospect of a vibrant bilateral relationship between the Liberian government and its Swiss counterpart.
BTFS, which has been operating in Liberia since 2016, feels letdown that they are yet to be recognized by the government for its operations -- a situation that the executives claimed would somehow hampering its resource mobilization efforts overseas, especially in Switzerland.
"The main issue here is that we, as a humanitarian and not-for-profit organization, need a formal recognition by the Liberian Government, line ministries and agencies, but generally by the District Representative," Walz said.
He noted that many government officials, some of who have paid visits to the foundation, know what BTFS is doing in the country.
"We need a formal recognition from them, said Walz, "because our donors in Switzerland can wait until they see some small recognition from Liberia. With all these things that the foundation is doing, where is the response from the Liberia Government?"
According to him, the government of Switzerland is willing to help Liberia in so many ways, but what we need right now is for the national government to demonstrate gratitude and acknowledge what BTFS is doing because, from there, the donors will know that what they send for humanitarian purpose is used for the benefit of the intended target.
According to Walz, a feasibility study is currently ongoing for the provision of health services and solar technology.
Walz noted that funding is already available for these projects. Walz is also a member of the Rotary Club District 2000.