The Rotary Club of Fishers Indiana spear headed by its then creative President, Tom Brunum Jr. in 2009 dreamt of a project to provide potable water supply to communities in Sierra Leone that are deprived of this vital asset.
The Club in this vain has announced a score of US $ 650,000 for this on-going project.
This was done in partnership with the Rotary Club of Freetown and support from other Rotary Clubs in the U.S., with the valuable contribution of Rotary International; a matching grant and generous donations from other partners kick started the project.
After Organizing four annual fund raising galas, the project has achieved 88 borehole-drilled wells. Last of the Charity Balls was concluded on 7th December 2013.
In his message, President Ernest Koroma applauded Rotary Club for the initiative to provide what he called “life” since according to him, water is life. “Today, on behalf of the people of Sierra Leone and in my own name, I applaud the Rotary Club of Fishers-Indiana, for their gift of some 88 water wells to Sierra Leone since 2008,” the president said.
He described the move as “a worthy contribution” to his government’s effort at improving access to clean water in our country. He disclosed that water-related illnesses are responsible for about 40% of out-patient visits to hospitals and health centres, noting that any improvement in the people’s access to water means, an improvement in the general wellbeing of our people. “Access to clean water prevents many diseases, and this is especially important for people in rural areas that are far way from health centres,” the president further noted.
As an Honorary Rotarian and a Paul Harris Fellow, President Ernest Koroma asserted, “I am proud to be associated with this project. I approve this project and I wholeheartedly appreciate the effort of the Rotary Club of Fishers, Indiana, Rotary International, Rotary Club of Freetown and all others who have in diverse ways supported this project.
The Rotary Club of Freetown was represented by two past Assistant Governors, Adonis Abboud and Christopher Forster and Rotarian Secretary, Ann Njai Janneh as well as Project Director, Rotarian Saidu Kanu.
What started as a dream has come a long way and reached around 132, 000 villagers Nation-Wide in Sierra Leone.
The project has touched the lives of the donors as well as the recipients who have referred to the projects as “life-saving sources of water”.
The donors on the other hand said they experienced the joy of being part of something that has improved the lives of others.
Rotarians from the three Rotarian clubs in Sierra Leone, the Rotary Clubs of Freetown, Bo, and Makeni made joint visits to wells in various parts of the country and at each well, they confirmed “heart warming” stories about how the lives of people have changed for the better.
“No need to close your eyes while drinking water so as not to see the dirt being ingested, no more fear of dysentery , cholera and other water related diseases that take such a terrible toll especially of children under 5 years of age. This project has made tangible contribution to the health of the communities where they are located,” an observer noted.
Wednesday January 22, 2014