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Hands to Honduras

Hands to Honduras Completes 15th Year of Service

Hands to Honduras, Inc., a tax exempt subsidiary of the Port Isabel Rotary Club, completed its eighteenth year of service in Honduras with a Global Grant providing clean water for the 3000 residents of Colonia Eduardo Castillo in Trujillo, Honduras.  Another clean water project funded by Rotarians was also completed for the 150 residents of the Pech Indian village of Moradel near Trujillo.

 

Each February, crews of Rotarians and others from around the country travel to Trujillo, Honduras, at their own expense, to work with villagers to improve their communities.  Volunteers work on the construction of schools and water projects.

 

Tom Plumb, a member of the Port Isabel Rotary Club, has developed and overseen development projects throughout Honduras for the past 18 years. In 2007, Hands to Honduras, moved its service area from Tela, Honduras to Trujillo, Honduras. Since then 36 classrooms have been built in villages around Trujillo, five villages have received electric power, clean water has been provided for over 17,000 people in five barrios, a Pech Indian village and a mountain village,  hundreds of computers and school supplies with training to schools have been provided, and countless latrines have been built.

This past year, the Port Isabel and Trujillo Rotary Clubs received were awarded a $102,475 Global Grant thanks to the assistance of PDG Art Zeitler.  43 clubs, districts and individuals from around the world provided the match.  The residents provided all the labor, sand, gravel, and dirt.

This project will provide clean water for the 3000 residents of Barrio Eduardo Castillo.  The project consists of a new dam with a sediment filer, 1.8 miles of pipeline to a new 54,000 gallon tank with a chlorination system and new distribution line to the 400 homes and businesses.  The community has doubled their monthly water assessment to about $5.36.  This will allow for the hiring of two water technicians to maintain the system and a part time secretary.  Additionally, a health professional will be hired to monitor water quality at the tank and homes and to educate the community about water borne diseases and hygiene.  Homes that have a resident with a water borne disease will receive education regarding water sanitation and their water will be tested weekly.  A reserve fund for future maintenance and replacement will be created.  And an annual audit of funds will be performed.

The Pech Indian village of Moradel, thanks to the dedication of Brenham, Texas, and dedicated volunteer, Rotarian James Moser (formerly a member of the Edna, Texas Rotary Club), has a new clean water system serving the 150 residents, a river water tank, a slow sand filter (with a chlorination system to be added in 2016), and a clean water tank have been added to their existing two plastic tanks.

So much can be accomplished with so little!  In 2016, we hope to not only complete the Moradel water system but also replace deteriorated and crowded classrooms and kindergarten in Guadalupe Carney, a village of 3500 people where we have previously built 4 classrooms and a kinder.

The 2016 work crew is scheduled for February 17 to 25.  Please join us for a life changing experience. My life changed, I visited Honduras after Hurricane Mitch in 1999 to see what we could do and never left.  It was my Rotary moment, an epiphany.

 

We are planning a new Global Grant to build a new water system for 8 villages near Trujillo. Consider joining us in this venture next year as a matching grant participant!

All projects are funded through tax deductible donations and grants from the Rotary Foundation. Donations and volunteers are currently being solicited for 9 day visits in February, 2014. Everyone is welcome. Volunteers pay their own expenses. For more information, contact Port Isabel Rotarian, Tom Plumb, 956-346-5595, tplumb@rgv.rr.com.  And of course, please donate to our efforts - Hands to Honduras, PO Box 1733, Port Isabel, Texas 78578.