The Abundant Water Training Centre in Laos will teach the first trainee potter how to make clean, safe drinking water after a donation from Canberra-based company, iCognition.
iCognition is the first sponsor of the Abundant Water Training Centre which trains Lao villagers to make their own clay-pot water filters to eliminate waterborne diseases which are common throughout Lao water supplies.
In the rural areas of Laos only 55 percent of the population has safe water and only 40 percent has access to adequate sanitation facilities. By helping villages make clean water Abundant Water hope to break the cycle of disease, illness and poverty caused by water-borne diseases.
Abundant Water is a Canberra based not-for-profit humanitarian development organisation helping the villagers of Laos access clean drinking water.
These filters were developed at the ANU in the mid ’90s and have been adapted to Lao pottery traditions demonstrating that indigenous potters everywhere are able to make their own effective water filters using natural materials in an environmentally friendly way.
Abundant Water has inspired groups in Africa and South America who are organising to replicate the Abundant Water model. Indigenous potters at the Yurauna Centre at the Canberra Institute of Technology are also beginning to participate in the program.
Abundant Water has established a potter training facility and is undertaking in the next 12 months to train 8 potters from 8 villages in the manufacture of clay-pot water filters and in micro-financed business.
The ‘8 villages’ program enables businesses to sponsor a potter in their training and then support their return to their village as a micro-financed business.
“The great thing about this simple innovation is that it uses freely available materials and utilises established pottery traditions to create the possibility of potable water for remote communities everywhere. Now this simple technology is becoming a means to introduce micro-financed business and to develop enterprise and independence in these villages,” said Stuart Forsyth, Abundant Water representative.
“By making the villages more aware of the diseases in the water and teaching them how to combat them we are ensuring that they and they children will live healthier, happier lives.”
iCognition is the first business to sponsor a trainee potter in Laos to undertake training at the Abundant Water Training Centre.
‘iCognition is excited to be the inaugural corporate partner for Abundant Water,” said Nigel Carruthers-Taylor, iCognition Director.
“Abundant Water is an innovative approach to empowering local communities to produce their own clean water. This is a fantastic Canberra-lead initiative, and corporate sponsorship is vital to its expansion. We hope that we are the first of many corporate partners to support this important humanitarian project.”
For More information on Abundant Water, refer to http://www.abundantwater.org/