Here in the United States, clean drinking water is taken for granted. Even in the most impoverished areas residents have access to water fountains to quench their thirst, but in most third-world countries many citizens do not have that same privilege.
Five COC students and three different COC organizations, Phi Theta Kappa, Alpha Mu Gamma and Associated Student Government, went to Nicaragua to help a small community in Nicaragua gain access to clean drinking water. Miravalle, Nicaragua is COC’s sister school and many students miss class by traveling several miles to collect drinking water for themselves and family.
“We built a water tank and added a filter at the end so, they can have access to clean water for a year because that is how long the filter last. Jessie Warme, COC student and Phi Theta Kappa member said. “They had on again off again water access from the city. I mean they were unable to collect [the water] in anyway.”
So now they can connect whatever water system they did have to [the water] tank so, when there is water it can fill up.”
Before the COC students built the water tank the water in the Miravalle community was polluted and not safe to drink.
“[The water] was pretty bad. They had a faucet and a couple of plastic gallons that they were collecting the water in but, the faucet itself was not in good condition,” Pola Pardon, COC student said. “It was leaking that was something that needed to be repaired as well as what they were storing the water in was unsanitary.”
The Miravalle community was grateful for the charity work the COC students did in Nicaragua.
“There was this one woman she had a little baby. She was a mother to a mother of one or two of the kids”, Warme said. “She told us ‘I give thanks to God, for you, for you tourists who come to share with us. I hope you have a great trip.'”
The COC students got to meet one of the most beloved public figures of Nicaragua former president Enrique José Bolaños Geyer. The president showed his gratitude towards the students for their charity work and discussed his plans to create a canal for Nicaragua.
Dr. Claudia Acosta, Executive Board of Directors at SCV International Programs and Sister Cities, and Dr. Miriam Golbert, Phi Theta Kappa International Honors Society Advisor, led the students on their trip to Grenada, Nicaragua. The trip to Nicaragua was part of the Nicaragua Water Tank project which provides water to more than 600 people.
Dr. Claudia Acosta is planning another trip to Nicaragua for charity work but this time around SCVIP and COC plan on building a library.