In August, 2010 I asked Tracy Hawkins if I could travel to Tanzania with her organization in the summer of 2011. She told me she wasn’t planning any trips, but that if we raised enough support it would be a possibility. Thanks to dozens of extremely generous donations by friends, family, and strangers, the trip grew from a possibility to a reality.
Tracy’s son Trent, two more youth volunteers, Kunal and Kedar, and an adult project leader, Tom, all later joined the group. What had begun as a two-person trip became a full-fledged six-person volunteer project.
We planned to build a new shelf for filters to dry on, a new roof over the uncovered area of the workshop, and a new kiln for firing the ceramic filters. In addition we wanted to distribute filters to nearby schools as well as record our experience in pictures and video to be used by SAFE Water Now.
We built not one, but five full shelves, with a capacity of 145-180 filters each. The roof was completed, and we started work on the new kiln, which will be able to fire around 50 filters at a time. We even sculpted nine of our own filters, and distributed many more to four different schools and nurseries. Lastly, I collected over 2500 pictures and 5 hours of video for use by SWaN and maintained this blog to record our progress.