Project: Clean Water Program in West Point, Liberia Partnering with More Than Me Academy
In February, 2017, the Waterbearers Travel Team (Shelley Greenwald, Kathy Steele and Ophelia Ramirez) with Co-Founder Spryte Loriano visited the More Than Me Academy (MTM). MTM is Liberia’s first all girls school, founded by American Katie Meyler (who drew international attention for her life-saving missions in West Point during the Ebola outbreak).
The Waterbearers, Inc. is now collaborating with More Than Me Girls Academy to launch a Clean Water Program for West Point (Liberia’s largest slum with nearly 100,000 residents). This is truly an incredible way for us to serve the girls and staff of MTM, and for the girls to have an empowered way to serve their own community!
Katie’s friend and Waterbearer advisor Erin Toppenberg, began raising funds for this program during our 30-day campaign for World Water Day (March 22, 2017).
Now Waterbearer Audrey Kissik from Idaho, who serendipitously travels to Liberia every 3-4 months, will be trained by our Travel Team Leader Kathy Steele in Boise. Audrey will bring 80 filters to Liberia to officially launch this project. And we already have additional Waterbearers on the ground in Liberia – Dan Maxwell and Samuel Babajuah – who are going through an updated training provided by Joelle Gordon, from African Rain, to support the program launch and it’s sustainability! One filter will go to each student and her family, and they will be trained in its maintenance and how to share the clean water with surrounding families in West Point. Each filter has the potential to support 100 people for up to ten years.
While our Travel Team toured West Point, escorted by the girls from MTM, we spoke with families who have their own wells that are not working. Our program will also support the repair of two wells, providing more water access points. Right now the girls have to go very far to reach working wells – which is not only dangerous, but not good for their bodies carrying and lugging the heavy loads!
To learn more about MTM here: http://morethanme.org/what-we-do/faqs/