In the wake of the earthquake which hit Haiti in 2010, Just a Drop focussed its role on providing local schools with basic yet essential water and sanitation facilities.
One such school was Croix des Missions, in Port-au-Prince, which suffered profoundly. Situated in a dense suburban environment of the capital, the school’s already stretched water services (children accessed water from a hand dug well using a rope and small bucket) were put under severe strain.
Knowledge about the underground pipe network is limited and there are reported to be many illegal connections. Water is delivered on an intermittent basis – often at best only one time a week for a few hours and is charged for on a fixed rate per property connection. There is no metering of supplies or charging on the basis of usage (volumetrically).
Due to the poor service provided by the public utility, there is a ready market for private water vendors to deliver water by truck, though the source and quality of water is likely to be indeterminate. Bottled water for drinking in various forms of container or packaging is widely available and at relatively low prices.
There is no water borne sewerage system in Port-au-Prince. Properties and camps all rely on on-site sanitation and disposal, in most cases to unlined pits.
The work that was accomplished consisted of fitting guttering to the roof of the school to collect rainwater. This was channelled to a large over-ground storage tank positioned in front of the school building. A wooden frame was built around this tank for security and also in order to place a smaller header tank on top. Water was then distributed from this tank to the taps positioned near to the kitchen area as well as to a hand washing area. Some new pit latrines were also constructed behind the school building, which consisted of two stands: one for boys and one for girls.
Overall, a total of 240 pupils benefited from the project.